EP #1 ~ 18.04.2021

In 1996, Walter Khumo had just qualified as an artisan but quickly finds himself in deep debt struggling to keep up with monthly payments. He starts trying to find his way out of this debt and then he gets an idea, a crazy idea.


Khumo almost made a bad decision due to the pressure of having more debt than he can service on a monthly basis. In the end, he received good advice and implemented a simple debt management principle which included:

  • Consolidating his debts

  • Resisted the urge to make new debt

  • Set a two-year plan to pay off his debt

  • Lived within his means

  • Refuses to make new debt except for house and car.


My name is Thandwefika Tshabalala and you are listening to How Adulting Works, a podcast by Hadithi ya Africa

I have been to every mining town in south africa. Every year, an army of apprentices get their trade tests and qualify as artisans. You can always tell who just qualified by their brand new expensive cars.

Very quickly after qualifying, most of the young black artisan will find themselves in a financial hole that sometimes take years to climb out of if they climb out at all.

Recently I had some business in Kathu, a typical mining town close to Kuruman in the Northern Cape. There are at least 12 different mining operations around Kathu with Sishen being the biggest mine around by far. Which means the town is populated by artisans who now call Kathu home. One afternoon I was speaking to Walter Khumo who started his career as an artisan at the Sishen mine nearly 30 years ago. I was curious why so many artisans end up in deep debt, so he told me his own debt story.

In 1996 At the age of 22, Khumo had just qualified as an artisan earning just above R4000, that would be about R15k in todays money. He finds himself in deep debt and start to struggle to keep up with the payment. He starts trying to find his way out of this debt and then he gets an idea, a crazy idea.

Khumo stayed out of debt for the rest of his life. He was lucky to have received sound advice early enough for it to matter.

Right now thousands of young adults are entering the workforce and are preparing to adult for the first time in their lives. It is said that a wise man learns from the mistakes of others. We have all made mistakes as we started adulting. so If you are in a position to, take a moment to share some lessons with them or even this story. If we do this then maybe we can become wiser together.

Season one of the How Adulting works podcast is due for release at the end of september 2021. In this podcast we will criss cross Africa looking for stories on how others are adulting.

We released this short sample you are listening to so that you can get an idea of where we would like to go with the podcast and perhaps get feedback from you. Maybe some topic ideas or even share a story of when adulting taught you a valuable lesson.

Look out for more samples as we get closer to the launch date. Until then, please invite your friends and family to follow the page and share this short version as widely as you can. We have set ourselves a target of 10 000 followers before the launch date and would appreciate your help to reach that target.

Thats it from me, Remember, There is no manual for adulting, all you can do is keep adulting like a champ.

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