In collaboration with the Table Mountain Aerial Cable Way, Capsicum Culinary Studio is sponsoring the culinary training for 10 unemployed learners, and helping them to turn their dreams into a reality. The 10 recipients – ranging in age from 18 to 30 – will embark on a Learnership opportunity at Capsicum’s Cape Town campus. A Learnership is a work-based learning programme that leads to an NQF registered qualification and is directly related to an occupation or field of work.

Says campus principal Candice Burger-Cupido: “We are thrilled to have partnered up with Table Mountain Aerial Cable Way to give 10 people the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to study with us so that they have the knowledge, tools and resources to become employable in the hospitality industry.”

Spokesperson for Table Mountain Aerial Cable Way Jonathan Skepe (People Services Specialist) adds: “At the Cableway we believe that together we succeed and realise dreams. In partnership with Capsicum, we are excited about the prospects of this learnership. Not only to bridge the gap between unemployed youth and the job market, but to inspire and positively contribute to the community at large.”

The 10 learners who’ll be taking part in the programme are:

Saud Ariefdiend (22) is from Bo-Kaap. “As a young man I made many bad decisions and ever since I have strived to better myself by being the best version of myself possible. Capsicum Culinary Studio and Table Mountain Aerial Cable Way have granted me this opportunity to grow and become a success and one day I see myself  running my own restaurant and making a success of my life.”

Zethu Gxekwa (23). “I come from Mthatha on the Eastern Cape. As a young boy I enjoyed watching my mother cook and help her in the kitchen. In high school I chose to do consumer studies because I enjoyed cooking and I realised that it would help me prepare me for the career I have always wanted which is to become a chef. One day I’d love to have my own restaurant and catering company.”

Marco Lawrence (21) from Bergvliet. “I have wanted to study to be a chef since Grade 8 but I have never had the funds to enrol in a good culinary school. My dream is to have my own food truck once I have obtained my qualification.”

Abongile Athenkosi Manjati (20) from Gugulethu. “Growing up I loved spending time in the kitchen with my late grandmother. I started cooking at the age of 10 and I’ve been doing so ever since. My father wanted to be a chef, but couldn’t afford to study. Thanks to the Table Mountain Aerial Cable Way and Capsicum, I can now pursue my dream and make him proud of me.”

Laaíqah Marshall (18) from Hanover Park. “I matriculated in 2019 and wanted to pursue my culinary dreams but, due to unforeseen circumstances, I was unable to so. I applied for a part time programme to study Human Resources, my plan being to get a job to save enough money to enrol at a culinary school, work on a cruise ship after graduating – to further my knowledge in food – and then open my own restaurant. Covid-19 cut short my studies but now my dream to study at Capsicum has come true.”

Saadiqah Masoet (18) from Strandfontein. “Being in the kitchen has always brought me great joy and my ambition was always to study at a culinary school. But my family could not afford the fees, so when I heard about the Learnership programme I applied immediately and was over the moon when I was accepted. My dream has now started and I can’t wait.”

Amanda Tafeni Matshaya (30), hails from Khayelitsha Makhaya, Mandela Park. “I am a mother of two boys, married and I love cooking. It has always been my passion. I tried to apply at CPUT but unfortunately did not have the funds, and I did not qualify for the bursary. Now this has happened and I am so grateful and excited. My dream is to become one of the biggest female chefs in South Africa, and an inspiration to other women to keep chasing their dreams.”

Wandile Mpakumpatu (20) was born in Kwazulu Natal but now resides in Nyanga, Cape Town. “I passed grade 12 in 2018 and completed a barista course in 2019. I have a passion for the hospitality industry as I enjoy spending time in the kitchen. My dream is to open my own restaurant, but first I want to become a qualified chef. I see myself providing jobs for people in my own restaurant.”

Nonelwa Sodoza (28). “I come from the Eastern Cape, but I now stay in Blackheath. I have always wanted to be a chef since I have passed matric in 2016. I studied hospitality and catering management at the College of Cape Town but had to drop out because I could no longer afford the fees. My dream is to give back to the community by owning a restaurant that will employ young people.”

Jade Temmers (29) from Athlone. “I worked on a cruise ship for three years but was unable to move forward in the industry because I didn’t have the skills required. Studying was never an option as I could not put that sort of financial pressure on my family. Having the opportunity to study at Capsicum will give me that big step in the right direction and my dream is to have my own food truck and my own cookbook.”

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