I am a woman living with a physical disability. On 22 March 1996, I had an operation on my leg and was told that I have chronic osteomyelitis, an infection of the bone, a rare but serious condition. That was very hard to understand. Everything changed; it was like my leg took away all my freedom. I could not go to school for two years and had to stop playing netball, which was very difficult to sit and watch people play. After a few years I learned to accept my disability and love myself again with the determination that I can do anything I want. I stopped looking at my disability and rather focused on the abilities in my life. Writing soon replaced the love of netball and I now sit and write about my life and the challenges people with disabilities face in South Africa. I express these through poems, short stories and drama. Disability can happen to anyone and any time.
After completing my matric I did a Secretarial Personal Assistant and Bookkeep and Accounts course at Integrity College and now have a Diploma. After completing my studies with Integrity I looked for a job but I could not find one. Then I applied for a learnership with Bytes Technology in Midrand and received a NQF Level three National Certificate in End-user computing. VW South Africa offered me another learnership and received a NQF level three certificate in Business Admin. The work experience I gained during these learnerships included:
Filing Clerk with BYTES SYSTEM INTERGRATION for 9 months
Receptionist with AUDI CENTRE REVONIA for 6 months
Business Administration with MEDIPOST PHARMACY for a 1 year.
A friend of mine told me about I Can! and then researched them on the internet. I phoned and was transferred to Desiree Mthanti who helped me to be where I am today. She told me to fax my CV and decided to personally drop it off and meet her in person. When she looked at my CV she said, “Don’t worry I will help you”. After few weeks Desiree phoned me to come to PMI/I Can! for an interview. She told me that the interview is with ADCORP SHARED SERVICES CENTER in Bryanston, but I must come to PMI/I Can! and their driver will take me to the ADCORP offices for the interview. Lorna Potgieter interviewed me and told me how the company operates. The interview went well, and a month later Desiree phoned to tell me that I will start 1st of June 2013.
My first day at work was very was welcoming. Currently, I am working with Anton who also has a disability. He is my trainer on the switchboard. I enjoy working with him, he knows the company well and I am learning a lot from him. Working with someone who also had a disability, like me, has really helped. Currently I report to Lorna, she is been good to me ever since my interview. She is a woman, a mother, a manager, a PA to Mr Kobus Pieneer (CIO of the company) and a role model. I want to thank Lorna for being so patient and understanding and seeing my potential to give me a chance.