FEEL GOOD | Mother of twins defies poverty to return to university

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Siphokazi looked after her twins using the SASSA grant which was 280 per child at the time. Photo: Siphokazi Ntsomi.
Siphokazi looked after her twins using the SASSA grant which was 280 per child at the time. Photo: Siphokazi Ntsomi.

Siphokazi Ntsomi, a courageous mom of twin boys, tells Parent24 that she dropped out of university over nine years ago - when she fell pregnant.

At the time she was in her third year of pursuing her bachelor’s degree in education, but she had to look for a job to support her two baby boys.

She managed to get a contract job, but that soon ended and there was nothing there after, she says, but an unpaid and unrelated internship that solidified her commitment to a career in education. 

Tight finances 

Relying on her mother's old age pension grant, together with the boys' grant which was R280 per child at the time, was not easy for her.

"I used to buy the box of nappies from the shop, with the change I would buy milk."

The boys' father is also unemployed, but she tells us that her "motto was not to remind him about the responsibility he knows about. When he can contribute towards the children, he will do it."

Despite the tight finances, she tells us that she and the twins are happy and well.

And now that the boys are old enough, she has decided to go back to school to complete her studies, and she believes that nothing can stop her.

Read: How I coped as a mother and student during the Level 5 lockdown restrictions 

"Funding will find me" 

Ntsomi says that she does not have funding but decided that she was not going to allow that to stop her. "Funding will find me on the way," she believes. 

As she finishes her second attempt at her second year of a Bachelor of Education at CPUT this year, she is juggling online schooling and motherhood. 

Ntsomi says it is challenging, not to mention the struggles presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, but she is doing her best as a mother and student. 

The determined mom tells us that what motivated her to go back to complete her studies was her love for teaching, and that even when she was job searching all she wanted to do was to teach, and nothing else.

Despite her struggle for funding and having to repeat her second year instead of just finish her third year now, she is determined to complete her studies and be the teacher that she wants to be.

A passion for teaching

We asked Ntsomi why she was so determined to be a teacher, she explained how after she finished high school she got a teaching assistant job, and she loved it.

Her passion even landed her to the principal's office as she recalls the principal saying, "We have been teachers for years but we have never seen a person who is so passionate like you. What are your thoughts about the future? Why don't you do teaching?"

One thing that sets her apart is that she has a gift, she reveals: she can read children's emotions.

Ntsomi plans to also study psychology one day, so that she can focus on helping many other children as she honestly loves it and believes that she is the right person for it. 

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