Thursday, March 20, 2008

Good News Thursday

I couldn't resist a second entry into
Why Homeschool's Good News Thursday.

My very dear friend, Sandi, is a curator at and director of The South African National Museum of Military History.

She wrote an email today about her amazing day and gave me permission to reprint it on my blog with a few minor changes to make it understandable to people who do not know the ins and outs of South African business life.

A bit of background. Despite the fact that South Africa has had a representative government since 1994, the lot of the average black person has not increased appreciably. They are still battling substandard education and poverty.

Here is what Sandi wrote:

You know in South Africa we have to train people in order for them to move up. We have to teach them and get them what are called National Qualification Tickets. There has been the most enormous dearth of knowledge that is common to white people that black people just have never been exposed to. For instance it takes the black youth three times longer to get car licences. The reason has nothing to do with a lack of intelligence. It has everything to do with the fact that most didn’t have parents with cars so they have never ingested the natural movements of driving most of us have. I’ve had to teach a lot of staff to use a telephone book. Had to make certain they get glasses because half of them aren’t reading because they can’t see the print.

Anyhow we have this guy who runs the gardens who I’ve thought for a long time is a brain in disguise. He has done a diploma in horticulture and knows everything there is to know about indigenous South African plants and trees and our gardens blossom. I also had a technician who due to an Aids infection has been unable to do heavy labour. So I took an R8 000 each chance on both of them. I sent them to tour guide training. Well they didn’t want to accept the gardener. But eventually let him in after I told them our organization was paying them and best they get on with the training. WELL – after a two week course and staying behind at the museum night after night after night to learn everything they could about the exhibits – out of a class of 45 guess who came first and second!!! My two staff members. The gardener came first. The Aids guy just stood and cried. It’s been his life’s dream to teach people. And he just got it. Even if he dies tomorrow nothing in my life will ever take away the memory of his sheer joy at having done what he always wanted to do and succeeding first off.

The report says both are naturals with the public and they knew their work so well they were a shaming factor to the rest of the white candidates.

Today was one of the best days of my life you know.

Now I have a cleaner – a raw, very raw Zulu cleaner who is learning computers. She has learnt to draw tables and drew one up for her work roster. She is now copying the titles of books for labeling the spines for the library. When I say raw – she is raw. No matric. Not even a standard 6. She is going on a starter computer course this year and wants her Microsoft M3 or something. And she’ll get it.

Sometimes going to work is such a good thing.

1 comment:

Amuzon1 said...

Thank you for sharing this heartwarming story. Makes one feel hopeful for the world our children are inheriting.