ATNS investing in disabled South Africans for a better tomorrow
It’s a grim reality that disabled individuals around the globe face marginalisation and ableism which prevents them from having equal opportunities to enter the working world. In South Africa, it is no different as only 1% of the 2.9 million disabled individuals in the country are currently employed.
In order to rectify this glaring problem, more opportunities for learning and skills development need to be created for disabled South Africans. Air Traffic & Navigation Services (ATNS), believes that education is a basic right and should be accessible to all. The organisation is therefore committed to reversing this staggering figure by empowering people with disabilities to enter the workforce.
So, what is ATNS doing to help?
As part of its mission to help boost the number of employed disabled South Africans, ATNS embarked on a 12-month-long partnership with iLearn to offer Learnership training to 10 people living with disabilities in South Africa.
The aim of the partnership was to ensure that people with disabilities, like Elizabeth Nzima, featured in the video below, can obtain the necessary skills through vocational programmes to help secure a job in the field.
Elizabeth was born with a physical disability on her right leg, which has resulted in a permanent limp. In the video, she explains why she decided to take part in this Learnership program. “I told myself I’m going to [do this] because I have the opportunity to do something for myself… to show the world that even though I am disabled, I can do this,” she says.
The “smart partnership” between ATNS and iLearn has afforded Elizabeth the opportunity to obtain a Business Administration NQF Level 4 qualification and quite possibly secure a job within the organisation.
“Through this vocational training programme, Elizabeth Nzima has already achieved so much. She is a shining example of a learner who comes from very little, but who has excelled and done exceptionally well despite the odds. We are incredibly proud of what she has achieved,” says ATNS CEO, Thabani Mthiyane
Elizabeth says that she is grateful for what she’s been taught, the skills she has acquired and the opportunity to become successful in life. “I want to be someone that my child can be proud of,” she says.