Nontokozo Mtshali’s story

There’s an author that once said, “Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement and I say that is true. By name I am Nontokozo and respond to the surname Mtshali. An ordinary young girl from a location where shattered souls yearn for a normal life and that place is well known as Alexandra – Gomorrah. Originally, I was born and bred in Kzn – KwamaPhumulo. .

Growing up in a less privileged community is an obstacle to humanity. A community where one has their own differences that one is forced to make them their greatest strengths. I fell pregnant at the age of 18 years just after I matriculated. I won’t lie i was afraid… But abortion was the last thing on my mind even when I knew the consequences of keeping the baby. Life threw lemons at me nonetheless, I survived. I’ve always known what’s best for me and the key was to never stop looking for more inspiring ways to help me become a brand that I am today. That’s how Afrika Tikkun came into the picture. 

I joined Afrika Tikkun in the year 2019 just when my son was 2months old. I joined as part of the CDP program and later on graduated and formed part of the alumni where we are geared into the world of work. This program assisted me with the skills that made me more employable. After graduating, I was placed in a retail company called Retail Training Dynamics. That’s where I met an amazing lady named Lizanne. She played a vital role in my life. Since it was a Learnership, i did my practicals at a Builder’s warehouse store working as a merchandiser under Kmarkt Retail Services. And then again I met Tumelo, Kamohelo and Gina. These people made life worthy. They gave a great sense of belief that whatever I put my mind into is possible. As Gina would say, “Do not overthink it, breathe”  . In the period of five months they gave me an opportunity to hold in for Gina while she was on maternity leave till her return. I worked as an administrator under the YES campaign. It’s been an absolutely amazing journey ever. I learnt so much but I believe there’s room for more improvement. 

I’ve encountered some  problem in the YES program. For instance, people I worked with in the store had their own opinions like I Slept my way to the top. As much as it hurt, I turned a blind eye and let them be with their opinions. Others would go as far as speculate that I’m less fit for the position I was given. We live in a world where our level of intelligence is measured by how we speak English.

Overall I can say that if it wasn’t for Afrika Tikkun I’d probably be telling a different tale. I’d like to thank all the people that were in my corner always. People that taught me the value of life. My goals right now would be to study further and secure a permanent job.

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