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IMG 1513From a small township of Reeston to the big city of New York .From a small rainbow nation to an enormous nation. Who would have thought that I Athenkosi Fani a 20 year old young man who grew up from an abusive background that led me to alcoholism at the age of 10 would have this opportunity.

Today I am a candidate for a international youth conference camp. The day the news came to me was I was going through a rough patch in my life, busy thinking about what was my next chapter after leaving the mtr Smit children's home. I was questioning my self with unanswered questions but the news enlightened me and brought hope to me. I give credit to MR MULHERN FOR OPENING THIS DOOR FOR ME AND TRUSTING ME .

The LION'S CLUB OF RHINEBECK's invitation has gave me another second chance in life to do what I love. On the invitation letter it stated that I had organize my own fare for my flights. I thought this will be impossible at first as many were doubting that I would really attend this prestige event but I remembered JEREMIAH 29 verse 11 states that” I ,your Lord have plans for you to prosper you and not to harm you to give you hope and a bright future.” This verse has become a motivation for me. I knew God will make his way will not give me a challenge that I can’t handle .

I remember as I was reading the invitation letter my mom suggested that I should pray before answering. I prayed and I immediately answered the invitation with confidence. The next day My mom and I went to the home affairs to do my passport it was then that I saw that it's getting real. 

I started approaching people friends, family and companies unfortunately too many of them dropped me but that didn't stop me from wanting to Chase my dreams I new that I want stop at nothing I wouldn't dare give up I knocked at the doors It was then that the NACCW reminded me that I am not alone. The NACCW came on board and offered their share then the MAYOR of Nelson Mandela Bay metropolitan also came on board and they came to assist me .

I had plenty of support from primary school principal Colleen Jansen , my secondary school David Livingstone High and also DR BENJAMIN and most of all my mother BONISWA FANI in terms organizing my VISA. We battled with filling up the documents as there were confusing, sweating together with Viwe and Mr Lulamile Yedwa however everything went through .

The day arrived that I had to travel to CAPE TOWN for my VISA I stayed with a lovely humble and caring child and youth care worker by PROFFESSION Mama Mandisa her family who were welcoming and they were very genuine with me. I thank Lizzie for organizing that .

On the 26 April 2017 at 9 pm it was time to go for my VISA appointment I was nervous and terrified as it was very protected environment. I thought it would be difficult but it was not. Fortunately a week a later I received my visa. 

I then told NACCW. They assisted in booking my flights and everything else.Now this opportunity has opened a lot of doors for already as I am now invited by the East London LION'S CLUB to work with them also the HERALD newspaper has been part and parcel in terms of writing positive articles about me to inspire others so that I can be a beacon of hope. .I wouldn't lie organizing for this trip has been a daunting experience at one point I wanted to give up but I thank God and my mother for always being there for me today. I am now a South African ambassador I aim to use this opportunity to be the example of light  and to also be an example of a champion .

I am an example of zero to hero but I want to say through God all things are possible as he has plans for everyone. 

Ladies and gentlemen allow me to take you to my journey a journey of a young Man who has worked hard in his life to make this dream he is now persuing a reality I am an agent of change I am chosen I am Athenkosi Fani .I thank you.  I will be posting on the NACCW page and the Youth Page my journey.