This story is one in a series from Frances Chisholm highlighting stories of lives impacted by World Poultry Foundation programs and workshops both in the U.S. and abroad. We encourage you to learn more about Ms. Chisholm and our poultry projects in South Africa.
Indiphile Bezana had visa in hand and was about to depart for her World Poultry Foundation-funded internship in Arizona in early March when her flight to the US was suddenly cancelled due to the pandemic.
The young South African is unfazed by the temporary setback. “I’m always positive,” she says, “I’m that kind of person.”
The fifth of six children of subsistence farmers and the first among her siblings to study agriculture, Indiphile was a soccer star in high school. An injury ended her playing days, but she found an affinity for coaching. After honing those skills at school and taking a coaching course, she volunteered to coach the football club, Boland Ajax, while studying Farming Management. Indiphile excelled and led Boland Ajax to advance to the fourth division. This celebrated achievement motivated her college to hire her to coach its men’s soccer team.
Indiphile was a star off the field, as well. One of South Africa’s largest broiler producers offered her a permanent position only two months into her 18-month practical training. But Indiphile had set her sights higher. After finishing her studies and practical training, she took her coaching earnings and set off for the Central University of Technology in Free State province, where, proudly self-funding, she earned an Advanced Diploma in Agricultural Extension.
Indiphile is in waiting mode now, but that doesn’t mean she is sitting idle. “I’m helping my family with home renovations and crop harvesting.” “Villagers also consult me about their animals; I recommend medicines to improve livestock health,” she added.
Looking beyond her one-year internship in the US, Indiphile wants to start broiler production when she returns home, and raise layers, too, with the experience she’ll gain in Arizona. “My family has lots of land.”
Indeed, always positive!
The South African interns participate on a J-1 visa exchange visitor program sponsored by the WISE Foundation, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in Dyersburg, Tennessee.
Ms. Frances Chisholm
Friend & Supporter of the WPF
Learn More About Frances