Over the weekend I met with a very wise retired old man. He wanted to know what I do, more especially about the Adopt-a-learner. So as I was explaining that I do not submit proposals to raise funds for Adopt-a-learner, he asked “but where do you get the money?” Then I explained that when I am invited to give talks I ask people inviting me to make a donation in exchange for the talk – so I essentially work for the money that Adopt-a-learner has. Then he said, “but Wits fees are so expensive! How do you do that?” Then I said, “It’s a crazy idea, but the truth is that most of what I do in Adopt-a-learner is faith. At the point when I accept the students I often have no idea where the money to pay for them is going to come from but I just take them and ask them not to worry about the money but to focus on passing. So far I have not had a situation at the end of the year when we were not able to pay fees for any of the students we accepted.”
So the old man and I parted and as I was driving home I started thinking: Most of my life is faith. When I have a dream I pursue it without thinking about what would happen if it doesn’t work and this is what makes me, Kgethi. Back in 2004, when I started Adopt-a-learner I had no money at all, only a dream to ensure that I am not the last with my achievements. I started by supporting students at Grade 8 and 9. It is now ten years and not only have we supported four students to graduation but we have also awarded the prestigious Mamokgethi Phakeng Prize to two deserving black South African women mathematics education PhD students at Wits. #Proud
When things are tough, I remind myself of what big dreams, faith and optimisim can produce. The Adopt-a-learner students are my inspiration, they keep my big dream of changing the world alive! They of course do that with all sorts of drama, naughtiness, excellence, provocation, creativity etc. With all the complexities that come with the work, I consider myself blessed to have them in my life. #Grateful And to think all of this is happening simply because of FAITH! #Blessed Just imagine what we could achieve if more of us had faith to change the world!