Gaishrie Sharon Singh is a wearer of many hats.
From selling vegetables at the Verulam Market to venturing into the legal fraternity, Gaishrie Sharon Singh’s determination and commitment to making something of herself has now earned her a nomination for the Influential Woman of the Year Award 2019.
Singh, a motivational speaker, transformation catalyst, philanthropist and serial entrepreneur, among many other titles, started her entrepreneurial journey at the age of 11.
It was at the Verulam Market that she acquired and honed skills that would make her the woman that she is today. “I worked at the market from the age of 11 until I completed my matric. I used to sell vegetables so that I could also help contribute to my home,” Singh said.
Although Singh was married off into an arranged marriage after completing her matric, her father’s words of self-empowerment and self-reliance never left her heart.
“We grew up in a time and age where arranged marriages were prevalent. My father knew my potential and my worth and so he asked my husband to allow me to further my studies,” Singh said.
From starting off as a receptionist in the law firm, Singh’s stature grew in the legal field.
“I started working in a legal office after leaving the market. I started off as messenger girl dropping off legal documents to different offices. I then became a receptionist, a collection clerk and eventually took over the firm. It was during the promotions at work that I studied law,” Singh said.
Singh was never distracted or discouraged from her purpose after becoming a single mother to two daughters.
“I needed an additional income to support my children and so I opened a construction company,” Singh said.
Singh’s construction company, focused on building schools, hospitals and clinics in previously disadvantaged communities.
Singh was challenged into buying into the corrupt culture of the industry.
She was dubbed ‘The Voice against Corruption in the Construction Industry.’
Although standing for truth nearly cost her life and that of her children, Singh never gave up in her fight against corruption.
“I wouldn’t be able to live with myself knowing that I was not making an honest living. I fought back. This unfortunately led to the closure of my business,” Singh said.
She went on to bag a majority shareholding in a national construction company and continues to make a difference in the industry wherever possible.
With her winnings not overpowering her loses, Singh was awarded Businesswomen of the Year by the BWA in 2008; named a Root of Africa by Sevafrica.com and profiled as one of the Ten Most Influential Businesswoman in South Africa in Oprah’s December 2008 Magazine.
Singh was honoured with a Golden Peacock Award by the Indian Academy of South Africa for her significant contributions in business and community.
ALSO READ: Indira Maharaj redefines stereotypes
It was in 2018 that she received the Women of Wonder Award in Durban and in March 2019 she was also conferred upon an awarded for the Women of Wonder Award in Dubai for hard work, perseverance, and dedication and to have managed to courageously strive to achieve and serve as a role model.
After receiving her international Metaphysics qualifications, she began working with abused women and children.
She empowered individuals through workshops and seminars. “It is important for me to impart the knowledge my father imparted on me to other women and children. I wanted them to be self-reliant and self-empowered,” Singh explained.
In 2011, she created Educate Africa to address South Africa’s unemployment challenges through Social Entrepreneurship, which assisted communities to empower themselves to be self-reliant.
Under this umbrella, she worked with school children from previously disadvantaged communities teaching them soft skills such as teenage anger management.
Besides her various business ventures at home, Singh holds ‘Mind Shift and Transformation’ workshops both locally and internationally.
She believes in living her life with love purposefully, mindfully and with integrity. She is convince that the universe takes care of everything else.