True, meaningful friendship can be found in the strangest ways and when people expect it the least. Graham Vermooten and Alpha met after Alpha and his wife had to flee from Zimbabwe. Graham helped them to achieve their biggest dream - prove that SA has a lot of Ubuntu in its veins.
Graham met Alpha on the side of the road when Alpha was trying to find work as a painter. Graham pulled over and set in motion events that would amaze them both.
Alpha did a small job for Graham and ended painting the Media Village campus in Cape Town as well as Graham's home.
Alpha's son also studied at Media Village.
During this time Alpha and Graham became good friends and Graham learned that Alpha and his wife fled from Zimbabwe when Mugabe was still ruling.
The two were teachers in Zimbabwe and their passion for education never left them. They dreamed of having a school in Zimbabwe to teach impoverished children and give them opportunities.
Alpha supported his family by painting but studied at night.
He went on to complete his Honors degree in Education and is now working on earning his Masters degree.
Graham shared their story with a friend in America and after a long process, the friend's organisation will be building a school for Alpha and his wife in Zimbabwe.
What a wonderful story of perseverance and Ubuntu! Alpha and his wife held on to their precious dream and Graham found friends he could help in the most fantastic way.
If more stories like this one can be shared, South Africans will be reminded of the beauty that is inside of every inhabitant of this stunning country.
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