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My name is Sindiswa Radebe. I am born and bred at Tsakane township in the Eastrand. I am a a remote Pilot licence ( RPL) and Remote maintenance technical (RMT) license holder.

My passion for aviation dates back to the age of 12 where my primary school teacher during “career dress up day” encouraged us to look into aviation related careers. I aspired to be an Air traffic controller (ATC). After high school education finding the right channel to enter the aviation industry was a challenge. I was less exposed and had no information pertaining the industry. Along the way, I stopped dreaming about the industry and  that phase was depressive. I took on administration learnerships and business incubation programmes. In 2021 I got an opportunity to obtain an RPL and that afforded me the opportunity to learn all things in the unmanned aviation industry.I then applied for the skills development programme at the Girls fly Programme Africa (GFPA) in partnership with UNICEF and obtained my RMT licence.My highlight was the induction week. We learnt the following:

  • 3D printing and modelling: the concept was new to me and very informative. We also had an opportunity to see a 3D printed drone.
  • Design thinking: To see how designs fit to problem-solution. We were challenged to investigate our communities. How an innovation that we think of can solve a problem. And my hypothesis was on drone medication delivery. For that presentation, the foundation through donations rewarded me with a personal computer and a router. The computer is helping me now to conduct research. I have managed to cut down on internet café surfing cost and I am able to store important data.

Additionally, the foundation really stands for their quotation, “Positively impacting lives one girl at time through education, networking, mentorship and scholarships”. Being there helped me to network with industry experts and liked minded individuals. Through storytelling and experience sharing, we got mentored, encouraged and motivated to have a different outlook on things.The GFPA foundation also fostered entrepreneurial thinking as a way to combat unemployment. As we looked into the unemployment issue. To see how STEM related careers could help the country’s economy. We were challenged to enhance our innovative thinking and abilities to start thinking like job creators and not only job seekers. The foundation shared a fully sponsored Entrepreneurial course at Enterprises University of Pretoria. I got fuelled up to start thinking entrepreneurship. As I wanted to embrace drone technology and use it to the benefit to continue growing my launched startup business. 

Currently, I am doing a drone business accelerator program. To learn how to integrate drone technology to our workflow. As start-ups we are equipped with skills to drive the adoption of drone technology use cases in multi sectoral industries. And building consortium of strategic partners through collaboration. The future plan is to pursue business related course and learn more about the economic part of both manned and unmanned aviation. The foundation has paved the way. I am humbled to have been part of the program. The baton has been passed on. It is upon me to pay it forward and make the difference.

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