July 2023.

Robert Khoza, a Kimberley resident and beneficiary of a local bursary programme is a source of inspiration for many in his community. Having completed his Bachelor of Education in Intermediate and Senior Phase from the University of South Africa (UNISA) last year, at the age of 45, his inspiring journey, through the support of Droogfontein Solar Power’s Bursary programme, shows that determination and passion can lead to great achievements.

The former business owner was awarded a study bursary in 2018, after finding his passion for teaching as soon as he started to work in the school environment as a reading coach, after his business in event procurement started to slow down. His experience and fulfilment of being a reading coach reinforced the example that his mother set and the influential role of his high school history teacher, that bestowed upon him his love of teaching.

“The idea of being a teacher was always in the back of my mind because of my mother, who worked as a teacher and cared for most of my family. Witnessing her dedication, she became my guiding light and inspiration. In a sense, becoming a teacher felt like fulfilling my destiny,” he said.

Currently, Robert is teaching at Letshego Primary School, in Kimberly, where he started in February of this year. He expresses deep gratitude for the bursary, which significantly transformed his life and that of his family.

“When my mother fell ill, I realised the weight of responsibility that would rest upon us, which fueled my determination to study further. I am grateful for the bursary, as without it, I would not have been able to achieve my dreams,” he said.

Out of the remaining group of seven who received support from the Droogfontein Solar Power bursary programme last year, six are continuing to pursue their education-focused qualifications this year, which is one of the scarce skills that this programme is geared to support.