Monday, May 20, 2024

South Africa: 20 teenagers build an aircraft

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Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi
Isaac Kaledzi is an experienced and award winning journalist from Ghana. He has worked for several media brands both in Ghana and on the International scene. Isaac Kaledzi is currently serving as an African Correspondent for DW.

Twenty South African teenagers have teamed up to build their own four-seater aircraft.

The plane was built in Cape Town by the teenagers who intend traveling in it across Africa.

They will be flying in the plane covering over 10,000 km across countries like Namibia, Zimbabwe and Malawi.

The group will also fly through Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and Eritrea before their final destination of Egypt.

Their plane will also make a stop in Uganda, Rwanda and Zambia on their way back.

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The teenagers are from various backgrounds and from all parts of South Africa. They were supported by an aviation outreach initiative called U-Dream Global.

Some of the teenagers seen working on the aircraft. Photo: U Dream Global

The program aims to inspire young South Africans. Teen pilot and founder of U Dream Global, Megan Werner told IOL that “When we started building the aircraft, we didn’t know anything about aviation.

We had to learn about all the tools and learning to read the engineering drawings was also quite a challenge.”

Warner said “We will also be giving inspirational talks to the locals at the different destinations and will offer them a first time experience on the aircraft because many of these people has never seen or even been on a plane before”.

The teenagers come from various backgrounds in South Africa. Photo: U Dream Global

An aircraft by African teenagers

One of the teenagers Agnes Seemela, told the BBC’s Newsday program that she helped build the wings of the plane.

She was quoted as saying that “I’m like a kid in a candy store. The plane takes off on the 15th June in Cape Town.”

This is the first time these teenagers are building an aircraft. It is also their first experience in aviation.

Seemela said “I learnt it all during this amazing journey.” Work on the Sling-4 aircraft which was completed in June last year.

20 teenagers worked on the aircraft. Photo: U Dream Global

Fund-raiser manager for the U Dream global Cape to Cairo project, Simon Manda is convinced “These teenagers have built something that will create waves in Africa.

“They are showing everyone what South African youth are capable of even though some of them come from difficult backgrounds.”




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