Hlengiwe is a South African national studying her Doctorate in Sociology at the University of Witwatersrand. Hlengiwe is the founder of the Reading for Tomorrow project, which fosters a culture of reading for pleasure, and promotes African literature, in primary and high school children. She was awarded the 2017 Canon Collins Trust Social Impact Award which helped expand the library and the reach of the reading clubs. She initiated Operation Buyela ‘Eskolweni (Go Back to School) with Duncan Village Youth Centre, where university students encourage young women and recent high school graduates who are doing unskilled work to get a higher education.
Hlengiwe personally recruits young women, encouraging them to either renew efforts to matriculate from high school or helps them with applications for college admission and seeking funding.
As part of her career plans, Hlengiwe plans to teach in a tertiary level institution, continue community work, including Reading for Tomorrow, with school students.