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VAN BRANDARM MATRIKULANT TOT KORPORATIEWE PRINSES

Mmapula Moepya (28) is vandag die toonbeeld van ’n suksesvolle vrou wat haar toekomsideale verwesenlik. Maar sy ken swaarkry, en daarom is haar hart en hande oop om nie net te droom nie, maar ook te doen…

My keel trek toe terwyl ek na die kalender kyk. Ek het matriek goed geslaag, selfs twee onderskeidings losgeslaan. ’n Sterstudent. Maar waarvoor? Ek het met soveel hoop aansoek gedoen om verder te studeer, en nou moet ek magteloos toekyk hoe die sperdatums vir betaling een na die ander kom en gaan. Daar is nie geld nie. My ouers kan nie betaal nie, al wil hulle ook hoe graag.

Dis aaklig, die besef dat jare se toewyding, Al my drome, op niks gaan uitloop nie. Wat gaan ek doen? As ek terugkyk, onthou ek my grootwordjare as gelukkig en gemaklik. Ons het in ’n mooi, ruim huis gebly. Ek en my vier broers en suster kon die lewe geniet, sonder om ooit bekommerd te wees oor die toekoms.

“Deur op God te vertrou het ek baie meer gekry as wat ek verwag het”

Maar in my matriekjaar gebeur die ondenkbare. My pa verloor sy besighede, en ons verloor alles: geld, huis, gerief, standvastigheid. In ’n oogwink was alles anders. Ons moes na ’n kleiner huisie trek wat voorheen as ’n stoorplek gebruik is. Wanneer die skool op uitstappies gegaan het, moes ek agterbly omdat ons dit nie kon bekostig nie. Skielik moes ek ook leer om die kinders se geterg tehanteer: “Mmapula-hulle het nie geld nie…” Dit was pynlik. Ek kon nie sin maak uit wat gebeur het nie.

Waar ons voorheen as Christen-gesin gereeld kerk toe gegaan het, het ons kerkbesoeke nou gestaak. Miskien was ons kwaad en teleurgesteld in die Here. Waar was Hy? Hoe kon Hy dit toelaat? Nogtans het ek vasgebyt met my skoolwerk. Ek wou ’n goeie matriek hê, iemand word. Dalk ’n TV-aanbieder, ’n motiveringspreker of ’n mentor wat jongmense in die gemeenskap kon help om hulle potensiaal te verwesenlik. Maar nou, met my matrieksertifikaat in die hand, kon ek nie eers my eie potensiaal verwesenlik nie!

Ek het ’n maand lank by die huis gesit. Dit het gevoel of elke moontlike deur in my gesig toeklap, tot die dag dat ’n familielid my kom vertel het van POPUP (People Upliftment Programme) — ’n niewinsgewende organisasie wat fokus op die opheffing van minderbevoorregtes. Dit was ek.

Ek het hulle dadelik gebel, en gou was ek gratis geregistreer vir een van die opleidingsprogramme. Wat selfs ’n groter impak gemaak het, was POPUP se lewensvaardigheidskursus wat ek vooraf moes bywoon. Dit het my weer herinner wie Hy is, en ek in Hom. Daar het ek besef dat Hy soms moeilike omstandighede toelaat juis om ons nader aan Hom te bring.

Ek moes van voor af leer om op die Here te vertrou: om rustig te raak en te glo dat Hy in beheer is, al verstaan ek nie die struikelblokke nie.

My vertroue het ’n oorvloed vrugte afgewerp. Ek het ’n internskap by die Wetenskaplike en Nywerheidsnavorsingsraad gekry en binne ’n paar maande is ek permanent aangestel. Deur op God te vertrou het ek baie meer gekry as wat ek verwag het. Die uitsiglose matrikulant van destyds het plek gemaak vir iemand wat weer met oorgawe kon glo, hoop en droom. Hy het alles in my lewe kom herstel.

My swaarkry het my ook meer as ooit bewus gemaak van ander se nood. Dis my passie om ’n verskil te maak. Deur die Donate a Can-projek spoor ek jongmense aan om blikkieskos vir hulpbehoewende gesinne in te samel. Ek is ook ’n mentor vir ’n paar jonger meisies in ons gemeenskap en het selfs ’n dansbediening by die kerk begin.

Op my Facebook-blad het ek geskryf: “I see an open door in every mountain.” Ek bedoel elke woord!

By | 2018-03-08T13:08:07+00:00 March 8th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Luphelo Lucky Buyaphi: My POPUP Story

My name is Luphelo Lucky Buyaphi and I’m a POPUP learner doing Computer and Office Administration. This is my story of before and after POPUP (People Upliftment Programme).

I lost my parents at a very young age, so I had to start working to care for me and my siblings. I was working part-time while busy with my high school studies. When I completed my matric, I immediately started working full-time. When the money started coming in, I felt like I needed to make more so me and my siblings could have a decent life. I slowly became obsessed with getting a lot of money without realising it. I thought money would bring me happiness and I pursued it. I started working two jobs, a day job and a night job. Still I wasn’t satisfied with the money, so I started getting into crime and ended up in prison.

My priorities moved from fancy living to knowing God. I began pursuing God more than anything. When I was released from prison, I had to choose between going back to work or acquiring a new skill and more knowledge about God with an organisation that is run by God-fearing people. For the first time, I did not choose money.

“My priorities moved from fancy living to knowing God”

Going to POPUP turned out to be the best choice I’ve ever made in my life. The first two weeks of Life Skills at POPUP were the best and will always be in my heart. My experience was life-changing. Some of the most valuable lessons I learned were about purpose. Success is not based on what you have or how much money you have, it is actually walking in God’s perfect plan for your life. God wants us to work hard and earn our living in a decent way. He wants us to be content where we are. He doesn’t want us to be stagnant. He wants us to prosper in all we do, but we should enjoy what we have.

I’ve left the POPUP premises and going back to the world, but I’m not leaving the organisation. POPUP will always be in my heart, and I’m coming back to sponsor POPUP in the future. I am confident that going into the world, with the skills I learned at POPUP and most importantly the relationship I have with Jesus, I’m going to conquer every challenge that will come my way. I’m happy to say I have found direction, and very sad to think that I’m leaving, because this place has become like a home to me.

I’m very thankful for all that I’ve learned at POPUP. I’m also thankful to all the sponsors who are contributing to the progress of this organisation. POPUP will always be in our hearts and prayers.

Lucky was placed by POPUP’s Placement Centre and started in a procurement position at Mesure Facilities Management (Pty) Ltd on 17 November 2014. Lucky is saving for his part-time studies to fulfil his dream of one day becoming a Charted Accountant. Just to think if Maeve, the lady that referred Lucky to POPUP on 14 February 2014 while he was still serving his sentence in jail never saw the potential in this young man, he might as well have fallen back in his old criminal ways. If you can make a difference in someone’s life through referring the person to POPUP for Skills Training, do it today, contact Nerésa Vogel on neresa.vogel@popup.co.za for more information.

By | 2018-03-08T13:01:24+00:00 March 8th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Restoring dignity through Hope and Increased Opportunity

Abigail Malinga’s story is one of survival against all odds. Softly this single mother of four recalls the events that make up her life. Although she constantly has to wipe away the tears, her eyes reveal an inner peace and her smile radiates a heartfelt joy.

Born into a large, poor family in Zimbabwe in 1983 Abigail finds it difficult to recall anything but destruction and abuse during her childhood with the resultant deep-rooted, daily heartache and tears. A life without love cultivates a hard heart and a smile-less face. “At an early age I lost the ability to feel and to care; my laughter and smile were viciously stolen from me.”

The birth of a first baby should be the most joyous occasion of a young woman’s life but for Abigail this was not so. Abuse led to pregnancy at the age of 15 and although she named her twin daughters Privilege and Perfect her life now became a daily struggle to cope and to survive. As a vendor buying and selling clothes on the streets Abigail tried to make a living. Her miserable existence was exacerbated when her parents and family evicted her and she and her babies ended up living on the streets and sleeping in abandoned buildings.

 

“I had nothing! I was nothing! Life robbed me of everything!”

One of the twins did not survive the hardship of street-life and this left Abigail devastated. At an age where most girls should still be enjoying their teenage years Abigail was trying to cope with the death of one of her two children while struggling to take care of the other. Desperate and alone the only option she had was to accompany her sister to South Africa where they hoped to find the life they were dreaming of.

Years of unimaginable trials and tribulations followed. Abigail found herself in a maze of hopelessness moving from one squatter camp to another and from one forced relationship to another; from the overpopulated streets of Marabastad to Lusaka in Mamelodi and on to Thembisa and Oakmore. She tried her best to sell anything from clothing to fruit and vegetables just to survive.

In her search for love and acceptance as well as a pressing need for financial security, a few disastrous, loveless and abusive relationships followed and the birth of two more girls Sandile and Selena. Abigail’s plight had now become totally desperate and even though she managed to secure employment as a domestic worker she was finding life extremely difficult trying to survive as a single parent.

“The disease” came without warning but the force with which it hit her physically was far worse than anyone could imagine. The cold, clinical confirmation; “You are HIV positive” shattered her emotionally causing far more damage than the pain and the suffering. Her life became a living hell.

A body on the pavement. No pulse. The frail frame of “the deceased” Abigail Malinga was covered as though this was the end. What she experienced there on the pavement that day Abigail describes as a dream. She says; “In my dream I was walking through a desert. It was tough and I felt like I could not go on. Suddenly I was on beautiful green grass and there was a man with a long white gown. I could not see his face but I heard his voice and he asked me which way I want to go…back towards the desert or forward to the green pastures ahead?”

The next few months were not easy, but Abigail refused to lose hope. By a strange confluence of circumstances, a couple living in the affluent suburb of Waterkloof in Pretoria became involved in her life. Jacques and Lurè actually cared about her and not only made sure that she and her children were taken care of but also took them to church. For the first time in her life Abigail was confronted with the reality of a God she had only heard about.

The decision that Jacques and his wife made to take Abigail to POPUP (People Upliftment Programme) proved to be a life changing experience. She experienced another “first” in her life – she enrolled as a learner to study at the POPUP Training and Development Centre. It was during the Life Skills Programme that Abigail’s relationship with God was given a real boost. She became aware of the fact that she was a special person with specific gifts and talents and that her life has a purpose. She gained self-confidence and learnt how to forgive as she dealt with her past. Although her health had not yet improved she experienced an emotional and spiritual transformation. “I got my smile back!” she exclaims and the smile is not just on her face!

Sponsored and supported by Jacques and Lurè, Abigail devoted herself to her studies at POPUP. She completed the Adult Education & Training Programme and followed on with the Sewing Skills Programme. She excelled! Her value as a person with God-given talents added real meaning to every day. Wilma Lindecke (Skills Manager) and Agnes de Klerk (Sewing Facilitator & Enterprise Village Manager), two staff members at POPUP, played a vital role in the miracle that was taking place as Abigail moved from being “nothing” to being “somebody”.

Abigail and her children live in their flat in Sunnyside. Since 2013 she has been in the employ of Bespoke Interiors in Lynwood, Thabathswane Creations in the Military School and at MEMS Embroidery. She has gained invaluable experience as a seamstress and embroidery machine operator. Currently she is working at POPUP, teaching and helping the learners and sharing her expertise

Abigail is a very active member of the Impact Word Church in Nelmapius (Extension 7) next to Mamelodi and has been the treasurer of the church for the past 4 years. She is also involved in community upliftment work and says, “It blesses me when I can help and pray for others. Sharing my past with people brings hope and that gives me great joy and fulfilment”

By Alistair Westcott

By | 2018-03-20T13:17:49+00:00 March 8th, 2018|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Monday-Friday: 8am-4pm

Salvokop Centre (Head Office)
Phone:  +27 12-003-2008

VAT REG NO: 4610252225

NPO NO: 007-050

PBO NO: 130004846

NPC REG NO: 2000/030918/08

By | 2018-02-27T15:26:13+00:00 February 26th, 2018|Hours|0 Comments

George

“I was a young man who thought that no one cared about me, not my family, no one. I started seeking their attention by drinking, sleeping around, and blaming everyone for my mistakes. I thought that the world owed me, but also felt that it was better without me, so I tried running away and committing suicide. During this programme, I learnt to be myself and to understand my purpose. I am not just someone who came to be a nobody, but to be in God’s likeness. I have a daughter whom I couldn’t take care of and I have not been there for her. After this programme I learnt that I need to be responsible and take care of my child. I must be a father who will love and protect his wife and kids. Everything that happened in my life had a purpose and it was a way to help me, strengthen me and change me to become a better man. I feel enlightened after this programme, because of the truth I have received and the knowledge I was given. I have decided to be a better man who fears God and will follow God’s ways, a man who will lead his family and friends to the truth.”

– George

By | 2018-02-08T18:43:32+00:00 February 8th, 2018|testimonies|0 Comments

Odirile

“Growing up as a child was difficult for me, as both my parents were alcoholics, and my dad would beat up my mother and sometimes kick us out. POPUP has taught me about God’s unconditional love and approval, as He alone has my best interest at heart. He alone is able to fill any void and He alone goes through everything I go through with me. I am able, for my God will strengthen me. I have stopped feeling that sex is a part of a relationship, because now I know that it is a part of marriage. I will not let anyone make me think I am worthless. I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me. My family has actually started praying with me daily.”

– Odirile

By | 2018-02-08T18:43:04+00:00 February 8th, 2018|testimonies|0 Comments

Reratilwe

“I lived my life without direction. I was with friends who had a bad influence on me and we smoked weed and drank alcohol. We used drugs to keep us awake all night. I didn’t know anything about God. I was in the dark and never attended church. This programme really changed my life. I feel like I found a family that loves me. I was open to talk to people that I met during this period of time. Now I know myself and what I want for the future. I know my purpose in life and I will make use of all the information and put it into practice. I will make the choices that determines who I want to be in my future. I wish I’ve been here a long time ago, but I still thank God for the gifts that I got from this programme, for it really changed my life and my future.”

– Reratilwe

By | 2018-02-08T18:42:37+00:00 February 8th, 2018|testimonies|0 Comments

Kenosi

“I lived a life of sin every day of my life. I drank heavily, smoked dagga and had sex almost every day. I was filled with anger and hated myself, because I never knew my biological father. Nothing mattered to me anymore and I felt that life owed me. During this programme I experienced a lot of love and I managed to change my attitude towards others. I learned that in life it’s the little things that count. I learned to work with a different cultures. I also learned to forgive other people regardless of what they done to me. I also learned that God is always there for us and we just need to find Him, for we are His children and He is our spiritual Father. For me, it meant that I should go out there and touch as many people’s lives as possible in life. I am now revived with everything I have learned here.”

– Kenosi

By | 2018-02-08T18:42:08+00:00 February 8th, 2018|testimonies|0 Comments

Philemon

“I was always telling myself that I was living ok even though it was not true. But now I feel like a new person. The Foundation for Life programme helped me with so much knowledge, and it opened my mind and eyes that I now think I was totally blind in the past. My life is totally not the same as when I first came here. Everyone must know and experience what I have come to experience and know. Thanks for the knowledge and truth and please it must never end, because I wish to see my brothers and sisters around the world feeling the way I do.”

-Philemon

By | 2018-07-31T06:34:11+00:00 February 8th, 2018|testimonies|0 Comments

Business Hours

Monday-Friday: 8am-4pm

 

Salvokop Centre (Head Office)
Phone: +27 12-003-2008

VAT REG NO: 4610252225
NPO NO: 007-050
PBO NO: 130004846
NPC REG NO: 2000/030918/08

By | 2018-02-27T11:41:54+00:00 February 8th, 2018|Hours|0 Comments