PRISON COULDN’T STOP BOITUMELO FROM BRINGING DEVELOPMENT TO MABOPANE.

She is a woman with a vision and big dreams despite the difficulties she has endured. Ms Boitumelo Makobe, is a former teacher and ICT district coordinator. After being convicted and charged for theft back in 2009, she came back with more strength and a great plan to continue doing what she loves. She now runs extra classes to assist learners that face different challenges at school.

Makobe is also a motivational speaker who has graced different podiums, TV programs and schools, advocating for change through education. “I started this business after my release from prison where I studied for my B.Ed through Unisa.” She said. She obtained her diploma in Business Management while behind bars. Atlehang Learning and Tutoring Academy started in 2014 back in Soweto before she relocated to Pretoria, Mabopane.

Boitumelo identified the challenges learners faced daily in class when she was a teacher. She left the teaching profession to work as an ICT Trainer and Facilitator. “I realized that as parents we really don’t understand the frustration our children face in class.” Said Boitumelo. Most learners drop out of the school system not because they don’t like school, but because of barriers to education that they face. This project was started to assist and bridge the gap between the parents, teachers and learners.

Parents are often too busy to assist and listen to their children. Atlehang Learning and Tutoring Academy has partnered with different stakeholders where they assist learners with counselling. This institution also sponsors five learners every year with basic school needs. The institution is not a business to Boitumelo, but a legacy that is meant to last for generations to come. “If we nurture, guide and support the young minds from an early age then we will be able to bridge the gap of poverty in our society.” She adds

Boitumelo believes that one should never allow the challenges they faced in their past define their destiny. Every business requires utmost passion, commitment, and dedication. Teach yourself that it is not about the money, but rather creating a legacy. Develop a passion for learning, and if you do, you will never cease to grow. These are the words she lives by from Anthony J.D Angelo. Anything that you put your mind to can be achieved through time, “Don’t allow the labels/stigma that society put on you deter you from your vision.” Said Boitumelo.

By: Thuli Galane.

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