Tag Archives: Success Story

From welding student to achieving his dreams.

All his academic life, Pule Nkaenkae had been a great student. He sailed through the first eleven years of his schooling and when he got the chance to do a diploma he succeeded in graduating with several distinctions. All in all, Pule should have been on top of the world. But after graduating it all came to a standstill. He just couldn’t get a job. His diploma in Road Transport Management was good, but ultimately, the job market was just too saturated to find a place for him. Pule was never one to sit on his haunches however. He still had a small but steady job as a sales assistant that he had worked steadily at for six years since a year after matric, and though it wasn’t enough to achieve his goals, he worked hard at it whilst he looked for something better. At the end of 2013, he heard about Sparrow FET College from a youth development programme he attended. Sparrow was one of the recommended schools for youth in his position or even worse, and Pule immediately took the chance and signed up for the welding programme. He was not hesitant about going back to school all over again.

“I love learning,” he says with passion. “Learning the theory of welding was very simple for me as I enjoy studying greatly. From the word go, what I liked about Sparrow FET College was the fact that you could feel the personal vested interest in your education from the college. You had a relationship with them. I was not just a face at a university, I was Pule who was doing Welding and they knew every facet of my learning. If I struggled, they would immediately see and help me.”

At first Pule struggled at the college. In those days, the welding programme was new and there were no stipends for students so Pule struggled with transport money. But he grit his teeth and persevered. Attending Sparrow also opened Pule’s eyes to opportunities the youth today ignored. “Young people today, they all want to rush to university, but that is not where the jobs are.” He says ruefully. “They should research what is in demand.”

By July of 2014, Pule was doing his placement at New Heights Tank Design as a trainee. After he finished his training, the company took him in. Here began another rollercoaster. Pule had a great work ethic and all the managers were greatly impressed by him. He was snapped up into another department as soon as he was made a permanent employee, and got the opportunity to travel out of the country for large projects. And as of this year, when the company split and a new one was formed, Pule was the in demand employee everyone wanted to hire.

“I am a very motivated person, and with the training I got at Sparrow, I finally got a chance to apply and be rewarded for my motivation. What I always like to say is don’t start something you can’t finish. It is a waste of time and energy. It’s very difficult to overcome financial struggles, they interfere with everything, but as soon as you begin something you need to work to finish it. Be determined, be motivated, finish the task.”

Pule has plenty more tasks he is set to achieve, travel, furthering his new career and more. But with his determination and motivation, he is sure to achieve his dreams.

For more info: go to www.sparrowschools.co.za, call us on 011 673 4419 or email us on admissions@sparrowschools.co.za

“I learnt a lot about theory and practical requirements for professional cooking, which is helping me at my work placement.”

Sinah grew up in the North West of Rustenburg with her grandparents, when her mother passed away. After completing her matric in 2011, Sinah spent her time looking for employment and in 2013 she attended a cookery course, which she could not complete due to financial pressures on the family. It was only in 2016 that Sinah heard about Sparrow FET College when a staff member from Sparrow visited Rustenburg to recruit candidates.. Sinah began her Professional Cookery course in July 2016 and spoke about how much she learnt at the college:

“I learnt a lot about theory and practical requirements for professional cooking, which is helping me at my work placement.”

Sinah is currently undertaking her work placement at Gold Reef City and is enjoying the experience. Despite finishing the theoretical part of the Professional Cookery course in December 2016, Sinah still feels supported by Sparrow. Students have regular visits from job coaches to check on their progress at the work placement and address any challenges they face.

Sinah is currently living with sister in Johannesburg who has also recently started studying at Sparrow…

“Sparrow is a good place for people like us who don’t have any money. It helps people, which is why I encouraged my sister to also study at Sparrow FET College.”

When Sinah finishes her course, she would like to get a job a permanent job in the food industry and has ambitions to become a sous chef.

If you would like to join Sparrow FET College today, email us on admissions@sparrowschools.co.za to book your assessment or if you are looking for an extra pair of hands you can host our learners for 6 months at no cost contact us: 011 673 4410/19. 

“Sparrow FET College has given me an education. Thank you!”

Lerato Sekgage had a challenging start to life. She lost her mother when she was four years old, her father passed away when she was seven years old and then Lerato and her sister moved in with her grandparents who passed away in 2014. Lerato rents a small place near the Vaal Dam and before she heard about Sparrow, Lerato was unemployed and looking for work. Her small inheritance from her grandparents was running low and she was desperate to find work.

Lerato heard about the opportunity to get qualified at Sparrow FET College through a friend, and was apprehensive about applying at first due to the lack of understanding on the course. Lerato signed up to the End User IT Programme a month later than her fellow students and said it was hard work catching up but ‘worth it!

“I really enjoyed Sparrow; the facilitator, the learning and my classmates. It really was so much fun. I particularly enjoyed learning how to use Microsoft Outlook.”

Lerato has now completed her workplace experience at Purple Esther, a manufacturing and supply company in Sophiatown and completed her course at Sparrow FET College. She is now assisting the Business Admin facilitator for one week every month and seeks new employment in the IT arena. 

“Sparrow has given me an education; I have learnt how to use a computer and I have also had great assistance to get work experience. Thank you!”

Get Qualified Now! Email: admissions@sparrowschools.co.za

Or, if your business needs an extra set of hands please contact Mary on marywebber@sparrowschools.co.za

 

Bokang Mathebura talks about his journey through Sparrow Schools.

Bokang begun his journey with us at the Sparrow Foundation School in Grade 4. Previously Bokang was at a school, which has over 40 children per class and due to his barriers to learning, he could not cope and fell behind in his education.

‘I was in grade 4 and I could not read and I could hardly write… I really did not enjoy school.’

We asked Bokang how he found Sparrow Foundation School and his face lit up:

‘It was so nice. The classes were a lot smaller and I enjoyed the practical classes like cooking, woodwork and computer classes.’

Bokang has come a long way since he first started at Sparrow Schools. He practices reading regularly to his teacher and his handwriting has improved dramatically. He has now moved up to the Sparrow Combined School in Sophiatown, which is now known as the Sparrow Combined Technical Skills School offering a skills education programme with an NQF level 1 qualification: General Certificate of Education: Technical Occupational’ specialising in one of the following skills: Business Commerce & Management Studies; Health Sciences & Social Services; Hospitality Studies; Civil Technology: (Woodworking & Timber). The new skills focused education will open doors for opportunities into further studies; access to NQF level 2 courses at colleges or into the field of work, which they have been trained in and is demanded by the South African economy. The skills education programme is 75% practical and 25% theoretical; Language (English and IsiZulu), Mathematics and Life Skills remain compulsory.

In January 2017, Bokang was selected by the teachers to be a prefect at the Combined School. His polite manner, good behaviour and caring nature is evident to all who meet him. Whilst talking to Bokang about his experience at Sparrow, he politely excused himself, to run down the playground to help a Sparrow FET College student who was in a wheelchair and struggling to get up a ramp.

He continued to talking about his experience at the Combined School and his love of the new skills programme and the Civil Technology: (Woodworking & Timber) class.

‘It is such a nice school, I am proud to be perfect at Sparrow Schools.”

For more information on the new Sparrow Combined Technical Skills School call 011 673 3558.

 

Sparrow FET College makes dreams come true to a hopeful mechanic

Obakeng Namane grew up Thembisa and developed an interest in fixing cars in his community, which ultimately led to him pursuing a career in motor mechanics.

A friend told Obakeng about the opportunity to obtain a bursary to study at Sparrow FET College and he enrolled on the Automotive Repair & Maintenance programme in July 2016.

“Sparrow FET College is different from other colleges; it is a great opportunity to learn theory at the college and gain practical experience during the work placement.”

Obakeng is currently working at Ford in Kempton Park for his six month placement and is hoping to continue his studies to get the full qualification, ‘Light Vehicle Technician’ which will take four years to complete. Obakeng is hungry for knowledge and passionate about the field that he is in.

“I would like to start my own business so I can help and mentor high school children who are interested in working in the industry. I have started from the ground up and I have been given such an amazing opportunity through Sparrow FET to have a fully funded qualification in Automotive Repair and Maintenance.”

Obakeng continued emphasizing that he would love the company who supported his education to know that:

“You are changing a lot of people’s lives! I believe it starts with the community, which then builds on to change the nation. You should be proud of your investment – Thank you!”

A Professional Cookery Candidate at Sparrow FET College in 2014 moves to America to follow dream career in catering.

Dudu Makgomba has come on a long way in the three years since she first stepped foot into Sparrow FET  (Further Educational Training) College back in 2014. After completing her Assistant Chef at NQF Level 2 skills programme including three months practical workplace experience at Rondebult Spar in Germiston, she has embarked on a successful and varied catering career. Dudu went on to work at OR Tambo airport for a company that supplies meals to passengers on the planes, she then worked as a private chef in Sandton and set up her own business called THICK D’s Bakery, where she baked cakes for celebratory events such as baby showers.  She has now accepted a once in a lifetime job opportunity to work as a chef in the kitchens of the 5* hotel and restaurant – Ocean H Hotel in the USA. Dudu has been offered a 12 month contract, with a great salary, all accommodation, expenses and flights included. Although she spoke about her nerves, as this is the first time out of the country and does not know anyone else, Dudu is excited for the amazing opportunity.

“It was my ambition to travel, so this is a dream come true!”

Despite being so driven and ambitious, Dudu was not always lucky in life and had to work hard to get to where she is today. Born and raised in Bushbuckridge, a town seven hours away from Johannesburg in Mpumalanga, South Africa, Dudu has come a long way from Johannesburg and now to America. Her mother was also a driven business women who was the first lady to have electricity in her home in Bushbuckridge. However it was her grandmother who sparked her love of cooking and taught her the core ingredient of cooking…. Patience.

“No one else in my family can bake; it is all about being patient.”

Dudu matriculated in 2006 and had completed an cooking course but was unable to find a job. She found out about Sparrow FET College through online research, where she read about the opportunity for a bursary in Assistant Chef.

“I had a great experience. It was at Sparrow where I learnt about pastry and baking, which inspired me to set up my own cake making business. What I like about Sparrow is that is gives a lot of people opportunities and financial support to make education possible. I thank Sparrow for the opportunity that you provided me.”

Sparrow wishes Dudu all the luck in the next chapter of her exciting career and will continue to support and train young people to gain skills and experience in various industries so if you would like to find out more about the opportunity to receive a fully funded bursary to study Professional Cookery (NQF Level 4) or Assistant Chef (NQF Level 2), then we want to hear from you.

admissions@sparrowschools.co.za / +2711 673 4410 or 4419

When Afrika Mohapi was left unable to speak after a terrible car accident, no one could ever have imagined how far he would come…

In 2015, Sparrow FET student Africa Mohapi was involved in a serious car accident that almost killed him and left him hospitalised for 2 months with no ability to speak  and severe brain injury. It was uncertain at the time, whether or not he would be able to lead a normal functioning life again.

This was not the 1st time Africa experienced a huge obstacle in the way of his life and career. In 2006, Africa landed his dream job working for Edcon Limited – the retail company based in Johannesburg, where he was involved in Talent Acquisition for the Human Resources Department.

‘I chose to study and pursue a career in HR, as I love to interact with people and help them to solve work related issues.’

For seven years, Africa thoroughly enjoyed his work at Edcon; he was involved with assisting the manager, auditing, training and interviews. However in 2013, when the company was struggling financially, Africa was retrenched.

For two years, Africa was unemployed and he spent his days applying for jobs and attending interviews but the work he was offered was through agencies, which meant work was based on commission, rather than a salary, so it was not a secure way to earn a living.  

In February 2015, Africa was flung out of the passenger seat of the car and suffered severe brain injury, which left him unable to speak and bed bound for 2 months. Yet it was not only his head that was hit. Africa’s confidence took a severe knock; he felt unsure of his abilities and was clueless about what to do next.

It was Africa’s Speech therapist who informed him about Sparrow Schools’ FET College and encouraged him to apply. In November 2015, Africa started the I.T. End User Programme. Although he struggled during his first month at Sparrow; with the help of the facilitator, Mr Banda who engaged and supported Africa, he slowly settled in and his confidence grew.  

‘’I was learning new things everyday and things were slowly turning around.”

After completing his six month theory at Sparrow FET College, Africa was placed at the Spar Central Office and he has just completed his six month work experience placement. The success of Sparrow’s FET model is combining the theory with the practical work experience; Africa was able to apply everything that he learnt at Sparrow to the workplace setting, including creating templates and spreadsheets for Spar’s HR department.

“I would advise anyone who is unsure whether to apply to Sparrow FET College, to go for it! It is so important to combine learning and work experience and Sparrow provides so many opportunities. I would not have ended up working at Spar if it had not been for Sparrow FET College.”

If you are a young person between the age of 18-35 and would like to gain life enhancing skills to help you enter the workplace, please get in touch: +27 11 673 4410. Visit our FET Facebook page and website for further information.

Please email headoffice@sparrowschools.co.za  if you would like to find out how to get involved with sponsoring a course to tackle youth unemployment and gain B-EEE points at the same time.