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. iLearn, a leading South African learning solutions business, 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.
According to Richard Rayne, CEO of iLearn, says, “. . . the answer to empowering people with disabilities lies with training and up-skilling them through Learnership programmes, in order for them to succeed and make a positive contribution to the economy and society as a whole.”
So, what is iLearn doing to help?
As part of its mission to help boost the number of employed disabled South Africans, iLearn embarked on a 12-month-long partnership with the Air Traffic & Navigation Services (ATNS) to offer Learnership training to 10 people living with disabilities in South Africa, including Elizabeth Nzima whose story you can watch in the video below./p>
A Learnership is a vocational and educational programme that links structured learning and work experience in order to obtain a registered qualification. It combines theory and workplace practice into a qualification registered by the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).
The aim of the partnership was to ensure that learners like Elizabeth, who have cognitive or physical disabilities, can obtain the necessary scarce skills training 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 we have the opportunity to do something for ourselves… to show the world that even though I am disabled, I can do this,” she says.
he “smart partnership” between iLearn and ATNS has afforded Elizabeth with the opportunity to obtain a 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.
According to Rayne, iLearn offers a hyper-personalised approach to Learnerships that supports interactive learning. “We help companies to identify skills gaps and create learning pathways that encourage continuous employee learning, which aids both career development and business growth.”
Browse iLearn’s Learnership training courses today.