Paying it forward

2015-08-11 06:00
Dolly Nxele, a Hact sewing- class graduate.
 Photo: Kalisha Naicker

Dolly Nxele, a Hact sewing- class graduate. Photo: Kalisha Naicker

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GROWING up in the indigent part of the Upper Highway area, Dolly Nxele worked part time jobs to earn a living.

She found it extremely difficult to make ends meet, and her childhood dream of wanting to sew wedding dresses seemed far-fetched and just a fairy-tale.

However, the determination and courage of Nxele proved that dreams can become reality. The 51-year-old grandmother of two approached the local organisation the Hillcrest Aids Centre Trust (HACT) and inquired about their skills development programmes.

According to Nxele she was spoilt for choice and could not contain her excitement after enrolling in the sewing programme.

Nxele and a group of other Gogo’s (grannies) will be graduating from their dress making course in August.

*She told the Hillcrest Fever, it is because of the HACT that she is able to use her talents and earn a living.

“I love sewing and making beautiful clothes. These colours inspire me and I feel proud when I see the end result,” she said.

“Programmes such as these give us hope for a better future and better life. In the first week of our course we made peg bags, dolls and even aprons.” She said that it is with this skill that they will open their own business and be able to support their families. “We just want to thank the centre for giving us this opportunity.”

Nxele said that she is also in the process of making uniforms for other pupils in the community.

She thank the HACT and her tutor Mrs. T Sithole for assisting in making her dream a reality.

“Mrs. Sithole is my role model, she overcame all the challenges in her life to make a difference in her community.

“She was so kind and patient with each of us. From not knowing how to thread a needle, we can now make beautiful clothes.”

Nxele also urged other Gogo’s in the community to visit the HACT and join in one of the programmes.

“We can all make a difference if only we try,” she added.

Her message to the community is to, “never give up on your dreams”. “If you have a skill, use it. We as a community need to stop waiting for handouts and make things happen for ourselves,” she added. To find out more about the HACT contact, 031 765 5866

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