Destiny Wisani Hlungwani started attending the Children in the Wilderness (CITW) Eco-Camp in 2011, he has been involved since then and just had a dream come true.
South Africa – In 2011, Destiny Wisani Hlungwani, a grade seven student, attended his first ‘Children in the Wilderness’ Eco-Camp.
The camp is run to empower underprivileged children and teach them about the beauty of nature. The children participate in wildlife activities such as game drives and nature walks and other activities.
They attend interactive workshops on conservation, environmental management, the geography and geology of the area, culture, and the importance of wilderness areas to their communities and their country; and they learn the life skills and values necessary to one day become great leaders and great conservationists.
Each year, Destiny attended the camps and follow-through programmes offered throughout the year. During one of the camps early on in Destiny’s life, the children were asked to write their dream job down on a piece of paper. Destiny wrote “pilot” on his paper before tying it up on the dream catcher the children made.
Destiny joined the Eco-Club which met up weekly and slowly his dream of becoming a pilot started coming true. Janet Wilkinson, the co-ordinator for the South African branch of the programme, has watched Destiny thrive over the years.
Destiny graduated high school with six distinctions, an amazing achievement and followed his dreams by enrolling at the University of the Witwatersrand to study aeronautical engineering.
He is currently in his second year at university. Determined to do his best, Destiny earned himself a distinction in mathematics and was awarded a full bursary by the Civil Aviation Authority.
Janet and Mike White decided to award Destiny and he was able to take his first flight of his life. He climbed into a small plane and with the assistance of Mike, was able to experience being in control of the plane. The moment only solidified his dream of becoming a pilot.
“I got to learn so much – from the pre-flight inspection to all the complexities of flying an aircraft. I was very nervous at first, as it was my first private plane flight, but it was really exciting and motivating. After my degree, I will definitely get my Private Pilot’s Licence, to be able to fly, and also give others the experience I had on this unforgettable day. I’d like to thank Janet and Mike so so much for the experience… no words can express how grateful I am to them, as they did this at their personal expense. When we were finally in the air, Mike gave me the controls to his Cessna. The feeling was super amazing, as I never thought in my life I would get to fly an airplane. I was just a village boy – who got the opportunity of a lifetime”.
Wow, what an inspiring story, you can find out more about the ‘Children in the Wilderness’ here.