Learner of December
I began school in Embo Reserve at a small church school. On dry days we had class, overseen by untrained teachers. When I subsequently attended “proper” school – grades three to seven – I found that classes were overcrowded, there were no text books or learning materials and, again, our teachers were not trained.
When I was 13 years’ old, I worked in gardens, earning R1 a day; by the time I got to standard nine, I was earning R2,50 a day, enabling me to take a taxi to school for a return fare of 30c a day.
When I passed standard nine I left school, because my family was going through difficult times. I got a job as a machine operator in a shoe factory while studying standard nine, which I passed in 1993, part-time.
I simultaneously studied my N courses in electrical engineering and eventually achieved my N3.
After that I did a marketing course through Technikon South Africa – a difficult assignment because I had no accounting or strong mathematics background.
I enrolled for the Media Works Imana ABET course in 1999 and was the first to finish both English and Numeracy. The ABET activities were new to me, as I had never been involved in doing a project before. It was also the first time I learned how to write a CV and a job application letter. The numeracy courses were also invaluable, as, thanks to the Media Works facilitator, they increased my understanding of numerical concepts and skills. Having a knowledgeable facilitator to help us and teach us was highly beneficial.
Importantly, the ABET course has helped prepare me to study further, especially in my studies towards a three-year diploma in production management, which involves Applied Maths, Finance, Quantitative Methods, etc. It also significantly boosted my confidence levels.
Imana promoted me to a senior member of the blending team and this year I was promoted further – to QA Trainee Lab Technician.
As one of the very first ABET graduates, I became one of a select group of factory staff who were involved in the rollout e of the new Basic and Advanced Good Manufacturing Programme that Imana implemented in 2004.