Phelisa Ncama, born and raised in Umtata, Eastern Cape, South Africa – proudly walked away with her BA Public Management and Governance qualification within the Faculty of Management, at the University of Johannesburg’s (UJ) graduation ceremony on Monday, 12 June 2017.
Ncama lives with albinism and has the desire to inspire others living with the skin condition and every young person who has lost hope.
She says she does not find it hard to live with the skin tone as she feels beautiful in it. “Living with albinism or any condition has everything to do with self-acceptance and adapting to your current environment. I even forget that I am living with albinism because I have accepted myself and my condition is not a curse,” she explains.
Ncama explains how easy her life was in varsity because she felt no discrimination. “Life becomes easier when one chooses to learn from the diversity they are exposed to and understand different circumstances. I’ve seen people with complicated conditions and that would remind me of how blessed I am to have a unique shade. People didn’t discriminate, but some would undoubtedly look at me and think that my everyday struggle is having albinism. My everyday struggle is being partially sighted, and I say it’s a struggle because I use my eyes more than I use my skin.”
The 22-year-old is currently a volunteer admin clerk at the Albinism Society of South Africa (ASSA). She aspires to uplift the albinism community and ASSA is a good stepping stone to her goal.
Ncama encourages young people to be go-getters and not be stopped by anything. “Having albinism is not a barrier that prevents one from studying, instead people should have dedication. I don’t believe I would be any more successful than I am now if my skin shade was any darker. In fact, I would be very poor if I’d consider my condition more severe than my dreams,” she concluded.