"I was retrenched at age 30, this is how I dealt with it and moved forward"

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Siya Tsewu
Siya Tsewu
Siya Tsewu /Move!

This article was previously published in the Move! print edition. 

It was a cold day in July 2019 when I went to the department of labour’s offices in East London. I was there to submit documents to claim my Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) benefit for the first time. I’d been retrenched from the newspaper where I worked. A single thought buzzed in my mind as the hours ticked along slowly and the queue shuffled at a snail’s pace:

“I don’t belong here.” I’d done everything right. I attended school and matriculated, then went to university, completed my qualification in record time and graduated when I was 21 years old. Now, three months before my 30th birthday, it felt like all the things I’d worked so hard for no longer mattered.

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