Student Spotlight: Norma-Zita Ngwenya

Dedicated to addressing the critical shortage of qualified teachers in South Africa, The LLC Academy’s Teach-A-Teacher programme seeks to ameliorate the issue by paying for student teachers to complete accredited teaching qualifications.  

“The primary focus of the programme is on creating Early Childhood Development (ECD) and Junior Primary teachers, who are then equipped to service underdeveloped communities,” says Eileen Thornhill, Director of The LLC Academy. “We provide these student teachers with work experience in the schools that need them, while supporting them financially through stipends, and academically and holistically through accredited training and life coaching. By doing so, we are enabling them to acquire the skills they need in the workplace, supporting the schools at which they are working with more skilled employees, and proving those businesses who invest in the programme with higher levels of B-BBEE accreditation. It’s truly a win-win scenario for all involved.” 

Norma-Zita Ngwenya, who is currently studying Early Childhood Development and assisting at Takane Kids in Bloubosrand, is one such previously unemployed learner who is benefitting from the Teach-A-Teacher programme. “The best part of getting my diploma is getting to have the tools necessary to do my job,” says Ngwenya. “I am now able to teach my own classes, and use the learning materials I need to create a fun learning environment.” 

“The LLC Academy has given me a chance to study a course that I otherwise wouldn’t have studied, as it would require me to leave work while I pursue my studies,” says Ngwenya. “Although I have not experienced any negative challenges with my studies, the course has challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and to discover creative ways of approaching my career.” 

“I am from Bloubosrand, Randburg, and am currently teaching in the same area,” says Ngwenya. “Being a teacher gives me the opportunity to make a difference in children’s lives. The children I have the privilege of teaching come from a nearby informal settlement, so being a part of an organisation that offers affordable education allows me to provide excellent education to children that may not have been able to afford it.” 

“This delight in being able to give back to the community is one we often see in our learners,” says Thornhill. “And it speaks to The LLC Academy’s overarching goal of giving a hand up, rather than a handout. By helping people to help themselves, by equipping people with the skills they need to make a life for themselves, more often than not we not only help the person, but help them to help their communities.” 

Ngwenya agrees: “To anyone who wants to do what I have done, I would say go for it! Volunteer, offer your services and be willing to learn along the way.” 

The LLC Academy offers an array of programmes designed to develop and support unemployed learners who have the passion and drive they need to succeed, but just need a little extra help to get there – Teach-A-Teacher is just one of these programmes. If you wish to fulfil the Skills Development, Supplier Development, Socio-Economic Development and Enterprise Development of your B-BBEE Scorecard, while demonstrably contributing to the upliftment of young South Africans, please get in touch. 

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