- Nokuthula Mchunu used to mop the floors at the Durban International Airport but the lady wasn't prepared to stay there forever
- While cleaning, nothing excited her more than the sight of pilots and so she promised herself she'd be one one day
- The number of female black pilots in South Africa is still very low so Nokuthula's accomplishment is even more special as she represents her race and gender
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By Llyod Dlongolo - Freelance Journalist
South Africa's high unemployment rate paints a murky picture as the nation strives to create opportunities for the young. Getting a job in these trying times is as difficult as completing the Comrades Marathon.
Nokuthula Mchunu struggled to secure a job and out of desperation, she decided to send her CV to the Durban International Airport.
The only job they could offer her was as a cleaner, so she took up the position without knowing that it would signal the beginning of the rest of her life.
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"You know an unemployed person will always be thankful when he/she lands any job type. I was grateful when I was hired as a cleaner and little did I know that job would mark the beginning of the rest of my life," she said.
While cleaning and mopping the tiles of Durban International Airport, Mchunu fell in love with aviation. The thrill of watching aeroplanes landing and departing was just too much for her.
Knowing that her chances of promotion were next to zero because she did not have the required qualifications, Mchunu decided to look for a job at Air Mercy Service. That is were her fairytale journey really kicked off.
"Air Mercy Service was a great platform for me because it gave me that deeper understanding of the aviation sector," she stated.
Mchunu was offered an even more exciting opportunity at Air Mercy Service. She was appointed as a flight coordinator and she could get an even bigger promotion upon completing her piloting course.
The Air Mercy Service is well acclaimed for playing a vital role in providing not only emergency rescue and air ambulance services but also a health outreach programme.
The lady from the impoverished township of Lamontville now wants other youngsters from impoverished communities to be uplifted.
"I did it so why can't other youth do it. Through my experience I learnt that no huddle is too steep to ignore. I come from a very disadvantage background and flight training is very expensive. But I never let that affect my goals," she said.
Mchunu dreams of flying places and taking on the world as an oasis. She wants to fly all over the world. That dream was far-fetched about a decade ago when all she ever wanted was finding a job that would put food on the table.
"Young people must not be afraid of dreaming. To dare is to do. Opportunities will always open up in time, no matter the situation. Circumstances are there to mould us and to prepare us for the challenges ahead," she added.
According to the South African Civil Aviation Authority, the number of black pilots is still worryingly low. People like Mchunu who come from disadvantaged backgrounds are breaking those barriers in their quest for success.
Mzansi is super elated for stunning woman who is now a qualified commercial pilot
Briefly News previously reported a stunning South African woman was in a celebratory mood after qualifying as a commercial pilot. The lady says it’s still unbelievable that she has finally realised her childhood dream.
@MafokoKopano has shared the beautiful story on social media and has asked her followers to congratulate her.
The beautiful woman explains she is now a multi-rated pilot and her outfit tells a story that she is indeed one of the best in the skies.