A Hustle Called Ben
Bernard Zamba Siamangala Simagwali, a man of many possibilities. Born 22nd June, 1952. I live to remember the tales of my father’s upbringing, from going to school without shoes, to choosing to get an education in the most harsh conditions and fulfilling his dream of working in the medical field. The active steps he took to actualize his dreams have stayed with me over the years and have shaped the man I am becoming.
What makes my father’s story so remarkable is his dedication to hardwork and his ability to create possibilities where other people saw a deadend.
Given the chance to describe my father in one word, it would simply be “Outlier”.
Interestingly enough, my Father’s work ethic was so strong that he would work a full night shift at the hospital, knock off in the morning, come back home to change his clothes and head off to the farm. My nephew Brian whom I fondly refer to as my cousin, who was a fewer years older than me would tag along once in while and we would only leave the farm until his goal for the day was completed. On our way back home ,he would pass by his clinic which he ran on the side from his full time duties at the hospital.
I can recall how strong an advocate my father was for education and learning so much so that he bought a black board to facilitate family math lessons. All of my older siblings went through my Father’s math lessons with the “legendary” black board, Lol.
My father, was born in the village in an era where education was an incredibly scarce opportunity. Getting married young and owning cattle was the norm at the time, however he put education first as his escapegoat from the typical village life. It was his only shot at fulfilling his longlife dream, of becoming a Medical Doctor. My father went on to be an Anathesist at Ndola Central Hospital where he worked for close to 23 Years.
Bernard Simagwali is a name aligned with excellence, hardwork, compassion, dedication, execution, resilience, peserverance and chasing your wildest dreams.
Aside from his passion for medicine, he was an agriculture enthusiast. My father was a passionate dreamer who dared to create all that he envisioned, from fish farming, orange groves, maize plantation, growing Mangos and other various crops and fruits he wished to cultivate, he thought about it and executed.
22nd August, 2019, My father passed on. This was devastating blow for me and my siblings, the entire family and everyone that grew to love him. His death felt like an impedement to the mission he had started. My father’s legacy is summed up in one quote, “Legacy. What is a legacy? It’s planting seeds in a garden you will never get to reap”. Over the past 4 months I have been working hard to extend my Fathers legacy through a branch company called Meat INA Box under Beonne Foods.
Beonne is a combination of my late Father and Mother’s names, Bernard and Yvonne Simagwali.
Over the last four months our goal has been focused on changing the way food is distributed. We are partnering with farmers to distribute high quality food through a distribution system that delivers food at a better value. Through Beonne Iam privileged to continue my parents dreams.
In conclusion I will leave you with a few quotes I learnt from my Father, “To build wealth either you own land or put seed in the ground”. “Rest is good when the work is done”.- Bernard Zamba Siamangala Simagwali.
“We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.” The world is oyster, take advantage of every opportunity at your disposal. Do not allow your circumstances to limit how far you can go or what dreams you can achieve.
Long live the legacy!!