Media Personality, podcaster, author, co-founder of www.ratingsforschools
Carol Ofori’s easily recognisable voice resonates with warmth and influence. Whether on her daily show on East Coast Radio, her talk show for first time parents, Raising Babies on SABC 2, or the thought-provoking discussions on her Carol Ofori Podcast, Carol has made an impact on the African media landscape. “
“I’ve won the International Sovas (Society of Voice Arts and Sciences) Award for my voice work, which is literally the Oscars of the voice world,” says Carol. Her latest media adventure is playing a lead character in a Disney+ series called Kizazi Moto: Generation Fire, a beautiful African animated show available on Disney+ streaming worldwide. Unsurprisingly for Carol, her role showcases that girls can do anything they set their mind to – she plays Mkhuzi, a racing car driver. “It’s still wild to think that I’m a Disney character,” she says.
Beyond broadcasting, Carol is a published author having written a series of six children’s books called “The African Adventures of Sena and Katlego” that have garnered international attention and available at all leading book shops and online. She is also an acclaimed master of ceremonies and recently ventured into comedy.
“I think I’m an all-round cool chick. I’ve done so many incredible things that I think I don’t celebrate enough!” she commented with a smile.
A pan-African narrative
Married to an incredible Ghanaian man, Carol’s family is a beautiful blend of South African and Ghanaian cultures. “I wanted books that would depict Africa for my kids, and they just didn’t exist. So, I decided I was going to write them.”
The African Adventures of Sena and his magical teddy bear Katlego are a six-book series that takes readers across Ghana, South Africa, Chad, Eswatini, Egypt, and Uganda. This pan-African union underscored the importance of providing their children with stories that span the continent. “I dreamed of something for my kids, and now these books are all over the world. And I’m proud. And like wow, is this really you?”
After completing a BA in journalism, Carol began her career as an intern reporter at 947 and Talk Radio 702, focusing on news and then moving into magazine journalism. Carol also holds a Honours degree from VEGA university majoring in Brand Management and her journey in the media showcases her adaptability and commitment. “There are no templates in this business. You know, we’re freelancers – you find your own way with your own brand at your own time. I’m inspired by just wanting to succeed,” she reflects.
Carol’s entrepreneurial spirit led to her co-founding an education information portal for parents with her husband. Their aim was to revolutionise the interaction between schools and parents and address a tangible need. www.RatingsForSchools.co.za helps one locate a school based on your budget, curriculum, special needs and more.
“We had just moved to a new city and we needed a portal to find schools and it didn’t exist. So, we created it - www.ratingsforschools.co.za,” Carol states, emphasizing her ability to identify gaps in the market and create innovative solutions.
“I definitely see ratingsforschools.co.za being a household name, it’s got such an exciting future. I cannot wait for where it’s going. And it’s something that we are both so proud of.”
Reflecting on her childhood, Carol commented that attending St Catherine’s convent, an hour and a half away from her home in Soweto, meant long days. This was a challenge as she and her sister would get home late when most of the kids living nearby were forming friendships in the afternoons, and doing homework we would have to find the strength after the long bus trip home to do homework. And her parents weren’t always able to support her at school events and sports days. “I’m running, and I’m coming first, and I look into the crowd, and my parents are not there because they can’t get off work,” she recalls. As she puts it, “Challenges must never be the obstacle. They are the road and the path to greatness. I think that’s what propelled me to always want to work harder.”
Carol’s work ethic and goal orientation was shaped by her mother’s relentless efforts to provide the best for their family. “I’ve done all these wonderful things. But I don’t come from a rich background. My mom worked very hard to put us through school. Much as I love my dad, I have to really give the credit where the credit is due and it, you know, it was my mom’s doing,” Carol shares candidly.
In giving advice, Carol is adamant you need a clear vision for the future. “I see a great future for ratingsforschools.co.za. I see a great future for me in the broadcasting and media space, and I see more books.
“The most important advice I can give you is to always know your picture of where you’re going. Sometimes you’ll share your story with people who won’t see your vision. Take the advice, take the feedback, take the criticism, but don’t let it cloud your vision.”
“Remember what you want and stay focused on where you are going,” she advises. “If I had listened to people telling me not to dream of publishing six books, these books would never have happened.”
Carol has two small children so finding time to relax is rare. However, she does enjoy being pampered and loves eating out and trying different foods. I like nice things – shopping – I’m a typical girl. I’ll relax in all those spaces I’ve just mentioned – and enjoy a glass of red wine!”
“Being part of KZN Top Business Women is important as the platform highlights women doing amazing things,” says Carol. “I think we get so clogged up in our roles and it is important other women get to see us celebrated as it encourages them to keep surging forward. Seeing different women from different walks of life, religions and schools of thought – encourages other women to take up the baton and run in their lane in their journey of life”.