JOHANNESBURG – They say you measure progress by looking at how far you have travelled in your journey.
For millions of people across South Africa, every dawn presents a new challenge. When the sun rises, in the East, bringing an African warmth and the hope of new possibilities, many others wake up to face defeat and rejection in a harsh socio-economic landscape. Unemployment is a crippling reality in South Africa today. Granted there are governmental strategies put in place to attempt to bridge the desperately gaping unemployment cavity, however, it is a fact which cannot be ignored. There is a lack of educated, skilled workers in the market. The bottom line is simply; the demand fails to meet the supply.
Undoubtedly, it is a struggle to bridge this gap because poverty and unemployment have made the future of the African child as fickle as the temperament of a new born.
Understanding the plight of adversity, i-Fundi undertook a project which followed the lives of its alumni, to see how big the strides education has made in their lives. A wise man once said, “Education is not the learning of facts but the training of the mind to think”. That wise man was Albert Einstein. For these pupils, education and opportunity have definitely been their saving grace.
Comfort Moeketsi Sebatie (24) worked as a construction worker, until he decided to change his circumstances. In 2012, he pursued a NQF 2 contact centre certificate with i-Fundi. Sebatie says deciding to pursue the qualification changed his life significantly. No longer a construction worker, Sebatie is currently employed and was recently made a permanent employee by his company, Altech Autopage Cellular.
“I had never worked in a call centre before so it was a great challenge to decide to study and start something new. The transition was vast as I was moving into a completely different field as I worked before. The change was very good for me because I got to learn a lot about customer service values, self-discipline, and the industry as well”, he says.
Reflecting on his journey, Sebatie now realises that he is in control of his dreams, and by proactively going after the life he has imagined, his mind has shifted to accommodate positive thinking; “obstacles are opportunities to thrive”.
Another one of i-Fundi’s graduates is Mpumelelo Ndalane (29), who shares her success story. Ndalane’s story is synonymous with the millions of students in South Africa who completed their matric qualification, but lacked the funds to study further at tertiary level. “i-Fundi gave me a good stepping stone to a better future”, she says. When Ndalane’s host employer, Standard Bank offered her the opportunity to study further, she grabbed the opportunity with both arms, and she thereafter obtained an NQF 2 Contact Centre Certificate. “I am currently an analyst at Standard Bank and further pursuing my studies in Contact Centre Optimization. Everything I have achieved is because of the experience I have gained from working since qualifying. The certificate I obtained from i-Fundi definitely opened doors for me”, she says.
Reddy Preeshan’s success story proves the fact that education really does open doors for you, and how far you climb the ladder to success is entirely up to the efforts you put in. Having also studied a qualification in Contact Centre Operation NQF 2, he is amongst the successful students who believe they would never have it if it wasn’t for the opportunity he received to pursue a learnership with i-Fundi. “Today I am proud to say that I am a Software Testing Manager. Before, I worked as a call centre agent, and was thereafter promoted to management level as a Service Delivery Manager”, he says. His journey to the top is certainly am inspiring one, which should be a point of reference to anyone who doubts their capabilities.
Remember, we want you to share your life journey with us. If you are interested in being part of this ‘success stories’ project, kindly email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visit our website and have a look at all the various accredited courses and qualifications we have on offer. If you are interested, don’t hesitate to contact us on: 011-290-5900.