Colour pencils

The Do’s And Don’ts When Purchasing Stationery

Beginning of each year parents are always found in shops and retails stores in a stamped of purchasing stationery for their kids, receiving the dreaded stationery list at school that consists of a long list with required pens, pencils, paper, crayons, among many other stationery supplies can be stressful to buy and finding that you can’t get all items in one shop.

The school stationery list often includes items from 1 to 10, which puzzles parents if it is necessary to buy all 10 at once. As important as it is for parents to purchase all the required items, there are basics they should keep in mind when purchasing stationery. Shopping is always great when you are exploring the markets, it gives you the ability to realize your favorite stationery items are more affordable in the next shop.

The Do's And Don'ts When Purchasing Stationery

With technology evolvement there are now endless ways to purchase stationery, online shopping options are implemented to save time and to also avoid crowding in shops. Marilyn White Radebe CEO of Soma solutions and founder of EduSupply – an online platform for parent to purchase stationery, adds that “As a mother of four I understand how frustrating it can be to shop for stationery lists and moving to multiple stores just to get all the right items. This is how EduSupply came about – a solution for parents to purchase stationery online and in combined school packs instead of purchasing individual items at different stores, all while saving money and time.” In some cases, it differs from parent to parent those who cannot afford, can buy in smaller quantity for certain items, then towards the middle of the year they can add and replace the necessarily recommended stationery depending on what needs to be replaced.

What to avoid when purchasing stationery

  • Avoid buying stationery at the last minute or days before school reopens.
  • Be aware of mass-produced generic school packs, make sure you contain the items required by the school.
  • Avoid shopping for items every other week and buy small items in bulk.
  • Do not buy glittering and stylish stationery with less quality.

The effective ways of purchasing stationery

  • Preparing a small back-to-school budget, it is best to prepare this year for next year.
  • To save yourself a good deal of money, create an inventory of existing supplies, by checking your child’s old school bag from last school year, and see what stationery would still be usable for the next term.
  • Choose the best brand.
  • Always get the right quality and the number of stationery items.
  • Never compromise on quality, stationery seeks quality, without quality the stationery doesn’t last long.
  • Taking care of stationery means parents should always get a bigger pencil case to keep stationery protected.
  • Choose the correct stationery supplies.
  • Make a checklist in advance if you have purchased the correct amounts of stationery.
  • Always choose quality.

They are few essentials on stationery that ask for quality the most, one of them is writing instruments, it is important to select the right kind of pen, pencils, and crayons. Parents need to understand that the type of brand used matters when it comes to stationery as they last for longer .

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About Edu-Supply

Edu-Supply is an online platform that is designed to help parents and schools across South Africa purchase their children’s stationery without having to shop at multiple stores to fulfill their children’s full stationery list for school. Its main goal is to make shopping for stationery convenient for parents by allowing them to purchase stationery from their phones or laptops, saving them time by avoiding long queues at stores, and having to visit multiple stores to find all the stationery their children will require for the term. 

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About Marilyn White Radebe

Marilyn White Radebe is a Director of various companies, including Edu-Supply and most notably CEO of Soma-Solutions, where she has been responsible for the execution of the strategy and to provide executive leadership which has enabled Soma-Solutions to grow and much as it has. With over 18 years of experience in the ICT Industry, Marilyn has gained extensive knowledge on digital solutions for SMMEs and large enterprises. Her core competence is in ICT, digital transformation, governance, strategy and business development. Marilyn also serves as a board member of the MICT (Media and Information Communication Technology) SETA. Moreover, she is also a champion for inclusivity and the use of digital technologies to transform the lives of our people. She has obtained her BCom (IS) Information Systems from University of Cape Town, her Management Advancement Diploma from Wits Business School and she is currently a member of the Institute of Directors (SA).

Soma-Solutions launched two new digital platforms this year; Edu-Supply, a platform designed to help schools and parents save time and money when shopping for stationery, and SmartSaver, an online goal-based saving platform created to inspire communities to save and achieve their short-term and long-term financial goals.

Through these platforms, Soma-Solutions also aims to showcase the power of technology, and how it allows us to break into any industry. Marilyn believes the Covid-19 pandemic has shown us the importance of future-proofing businesses, and through these two platforms, Soma-Solutions is showing entrepreneurs how this can be done through technology. We can now break into any industry, and grow existing business operations through harnessing the power of digital.


  • 2020 – Innovator Trust Top Women Owned Achiever (April to June)
  • 2020 – Standard Bank Top Women in ICT Finalist
  • 2020 – Article featured in IT Web on digital skills
  • 2020 – Speaker – The ICT Leaky Pipeline
  • 2020 – Speaker – BBBEE ICT Sector Council Women’s Day Webinar
  • 2020 – Speaker – Communications Workers Union Women’s Day Webinar
  • 2019 – Speaker – AfriCom – Maximising the Potential of Africa’s People
  • 2019 – Chairperson – Economic Transformation Track
  • 2019 – Panelist – Standard Bank Women in ICT
  • 2019 – Speaker and Panelist – Shanduka Black Umbrellas Women in Business 2019
  • 2019 – Speaker and Panelist – SITA Women in ICT 2019


  • Passionate about the advancement of women through digital opportunities
  • Has the leadership abilities, skills and competence to serve as a Non-Executive and Executive Director
  • Helping entrepreneurs leverage the digital platform economy

Professional Competencies:

  • ICT
  • Digital Transformation
  • Governance
  • Strategy
  • Business Development
  • Economic Transformation
  • Skills Development
  • Financial Management

Industry Exposure

  • Department of Trade and Industry
  • Britehouse a Dimension Data Company
  • Unilever
  • Centre for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration
  • Department of Water and Sanitation
  • NHLS
  • Microsoft
  • Procter & Gamble
  • EOH
  • Department of Communications and Digital Technologies
  • Mimecast
  • Sentech
  • Accenture
  • Standard Bank
  • Gauteng Shared Services Centre
  • Gauteng Department of Health
  • T-Systems
  • SAP
  • SITA
  • Oracle
  • Sage
  • Altron
  • Barloworld
  • Board of Healthcare Funders
  • Tata


  • SA Women in ICT – Strives for the advancement of women and girls in the ICT industry
  • Black IT Forum – Strives for the economic inclusion of black people in the ICT

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