Pilot Programs

The Pilot Program was designed to evaluate the Business Model and the Entrepreneurial Support Packet and to gather feedback from crèche leaders to adapt the Entrepreneurial Initiative for future implementation. We were able to test the initiative at two crèches: Kiddies College Preschool in the middle income neighborhood of Observatory and Gege’s Crèche in the low income township of Langa.

Kiddies College Preschool sold the five initial Wonderbags in the first week. They then took the initiative to contact the Wonderbag distributor for more inventory as was described in the Entrepreneurial Support Packet. In the second week, they were able to sell two more Wonderbags and are continuing to grow their business. This was very encouraging as it showed that the Business Model has potential for getting energy efficient products into the community.


Kiddies College Preschool Energy Product Entrepreneurs

Gege’s Crèche also had success during the program selling the Wonderbags despite the concern of whether they were capable of supporting the business in their community, selling two Wonderbags in the two weeks before holiday recess. Although this is lower than Kiddies College Preschool, the ratio of Wonderbags sold to number of students was roughly the same, about 5%. This suggests that there may be a market for Wonderbags in the community of Langa, and the Business Model may work effectively for crèches in low income communities. When Gege’s Crèche continues its distribution business in the upcoming school year, it will be seen whether they are able to sell their initial supply and contact the distributor.


Gege’s Creche Energy Product Entrepreneurs

Various departments within the City of Cape Town will be working together, coordinated by the Office of Sustainable Livelihoods and with the help of our co-researcher, Max Dingaan, to conduct longer Pilot Programs in 2015. These pilots will help determine if the model is effective at crèches of different income levels and evaluate the long-term sustainability of the model. Early signs suggest that the model does support distribution businesses in low income communities and may be a suitable model for expanding to a wider range of communities throughout South Africa.