Reality check, the high rise in unemployment and an increasing number of graduates without jobs has pushed youth into seeking other options. We caught up with Anna Molibeli to share her story of hope with us.
Anna Molibeli is a village girl from Pulane, Teya-Teyaneng. She is a nature junkie and a lover of books and words. She loves encouraging women and finds peace in letting people know about the love of God.
Anna graduated from the National University of Lesotho with a Bachelor of Education majoring in English Language and Literature in 2015. She was not interested in settling down and getting a job immediately after graduation but instead wanted to further her studies.
She applied to numerous universities and for scholarships but to no avail. “I have lost count of the number of applications I sent to schools and governments, asking to be admitted and be sponsored. Unfortunately that didn’t work out for me. It almost tore me apart because I wanted to go back to school with all that I am. I love Education, no matter how skewed the system is.” She said.
Life after varsity, for someone who doesn’t have their mind busy is often devastating. It wasn’t anyhow different for Anna. “Seeing as I couldn’t get admitted anywhere, I thought it was a better idea to maybe try and find a job.” She said.
She placed all her focus and energy on job hunting and started applying for jobs everywhere, online and offline. “I even asked my former boss to take me back at a supermarket I used to work for before I went to NUL.” In 2016 she tried selling some perfumes but that didn’t work too! “Now this was a rock bottom for me. I didn’t know what else to do anymore.” She recalls
In 2017, things took a drastic turn. In June she got a message from one Chinese woman on LinkendIn who asked her to forward her CV and some documents as they needed English teachers. “I was already doing my victory dance, telling my sisters that I was going to work in China.” She timidly recollects.
She sent through everything only to be disappointed when she was told that the job was only for South African passport holders. A few weeks later she had another job offer in Johannesburg, attended the interview and passed it, but only failed to get the job because she didn’t have a work permit. “This didn’t break me; I guess I was now getting used to being rejected.”
A friend got a job offer from some school in Taiwan. She met Jenny, an English-teachers’ recruiter agent, on seriousteachers.com. Her friend was the one interviewed and she was asked to bring someone along and she picked Anna. “The day after my interview in Johannesburg, I got an email from Jenny telling me that the school in Taiwan would love to work with us.” She commented excitedly.
Despite the hurdles she seemed to be facing, her time finally came. Anna is currently working as an English teacher at an elementary school called Stanford American Language School in Hsinchu, Taiwan. “I never really thought I’d teach the young minds, so it kind of changed me; because teaching children is different from teaching the boys and girls at high school.”
Despite what we often hear in media about people being offered jobs on end overseas only for them to end up being some of the many who are human trafficked, it was different for them. They asked for the school’s website and found it to be legit.
“We were scared still. One day Jenny mistakenly sent me invitation letters of some girls from Cape Town and I asked for their email addresses.” She started communicating with them and found the assurance she needed when one girl told her that her friend went to teach at Taiwan in June.
“My time with the kids has been amazing, hectic, challenging, and of course life changing. I was in Children’s ministry at my local church. My life has always been colored with kids, they’d come to our house uninvited very often and we’d sit, chat and play together.” She said speaking on her experience so far with the kids.
“I feel like I am more of a servant here. There’s no time for me to be smart and put on my red lipstick because I work with kids; it’s just the natural me and the kids. We learn sentence patterns, reading skills, and everything while playing games. We sweat! I sometimes feel like I am working in some sort of a university which offers kids education because I go home drained every day.” She added.
“Taiwan is awesome! What makes it more exciting to live in is the freedom to go wherever I want, at any given time without the fear of being a target of thugs. There’s zero-crime and it is peaceful; everyone minds their own business” She says though this may sound appealing to other people, she finds it hard to live in an environment where everyone minds their business coming from a background where we are all one close-knit family.
Anna says it is important for people to consider applying for international jobs. “You don’t have to be part of any ruling party or hold a certain name for you to get a job here; all you need is your qualifications.”
The standard of education is also very high, which challenges her to stretch out and get out of her comfort zone. “You get to live in big cities and most schools have all the facilities you need to aid your teaching.”
She recommends English teachers back at home to try online jobs too, register with websites like seriousteachers.com and teachaway.com and apply each time posts come out. “China is in need of English teachers; some schools don’t even require you to be a teacher by profession. As long as you can speak English fluently and have a university degree, you are good to go.”
Her counsel to them, also, is to get a TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) certificate, if needed, online. ” I don’t have any solution or a sure thing to do, I am only certain that everybody could use the strength from God to keep holding it together until they are sorted.”
“Chinese people are all over our country, we might as well use this opportunity to get something from their country as well. We teach them English, they give us money; you can work forever, or you can go back home and start your own business.” She concluded.
To connect with Anna follow her on her blog– annahmolibeli.wordpress.com