The market really comes to life when the ParkRunners start moving through after their run.
We are passionate about small, local businesses and helping people uplift themselves.
The whole idea behind the market, was to create a place where small entrepreneurs can sell their own produce or creations to the local community and thereby building our local economy. We believe that charity starts at home, and therefore we should support our own, Local Farmers, Business People, Chefs and Artists. Which is why our slogan is: “local is lekke!”
We are proudly South African, and we welcome each and every person who has the guts to start his own business, no matter in which industry it may fall. We are here to support and uplift our own community and our passion is to help you achieve yours.
James Oppenheim said: “The foolish man seeks happiness in the distance. The wise grows it under his feet.”
Charlene started the market on the 25th of November 2017. Its first name was the ‘Rietvlei Boeremark | Farmers Market’ and changed to the ‘Blue Pea Country Market’ in November 2018.
The name Blue Pea symbolises the new life and metamorphosis that the Market and Skills Development Project aims to bring to the local community. It comes from the Blue Pea flower that has rejuvenating and healing properties and the beautiful Pea Blue butterfly that inhabits this area of South Africa.
“I met my husband at the tender age of 15 and we got married almost 6 years later and are now the proud parents of 4 beautiful children. (Three boys and one girl). Our youngest son was born with Lymphangioma which was a massive shock to our family.
And just 3 years after that we lost just about everything after the credit crunch of 2009. Consequently, we learnt what it was like to have nothing and to have to start from the bottom again. Which is why we love helping others in making it easier to start a new, small business and bringing their products to the market where the local community can support and help us grow.
Small business, entrepreneurship and skills development has always been my passion. I also started a few businesses of my own in the past. The first being a corporate embroidery company, coffee shop, guest house and now the country market and skills development centre. I also love growing organic veggies and flowers and now also make my own compost range. I love people and helping them find their passion and life purpose.”
I am now the Chairperson of the Alberton and Jhb South Business Forum and aim to take our vision to help smes, to the next level with the help of the Forum.
1. Gogo's Gardens
Charlene completed her “Foundations for Farming” course in November 2017 and then started the first Skills Development Project, Gogo’s Garden (Grandma’s Garden) at Jacksonsdrift in the beginning of 2018. Tracy has now taken over the project completely but still comes for training and advice from time to time.
2. Skills Development
Our vision is to start a Skills Development Centre where we can empower and train people to start their own businesses. We strongly believe that small business is the answer to South Africa’s unemployment question. We would like to expand this into a hub where we can provide all the services, mentorship and training that any new business owner will need. From HR services, Marketing, Bookkeeping, Social Media Marketing, Graphic Design and Printing, Web Design etc.
If you would like to support our skills development project and help us grow this initiative into the future, please get in touch? We can use all the help we can get. Whether it be a donation of money, resources, time, clothing, gardeing equipment or anything whatsoever, it will be greatly appreciated.