18 November 2021 | Story Lunga Luthuli | Photo Supplied
Geraldine Lengau, Senior Officer in the Unit for Institutional Change and Social Justice, has fulfilled her dream of becoming an attorney, thanking her support structure for believing in her.

“I cried tears of joy and realized that God is always faithful. What He promises, He fulfils. It taught me never to take my eyes of Christ; even when I did not feel like it, He reminded me why I am here,” says Geraldine Lengau, Senior Officer in the Unit for Institutional Change and Social Justice after being admitted as an Attorney.

Geraldine said this when she took her long-awaited oath on 4 November 2021 and became an admitted attorney after twelve attempts of writing the board exams over six years.

She says: “I have always wanted to be a lawyer; my grandmother has to be the most important one of many people who were the drive behind my interest because of the belief she has in me.”

Geraldine joined the University of the Free State Provisioning Department in 2010 as a Filing Clerk and believes “a lot has changed, but despite that it has truly been a blessing. Every single position I have occupied has been a learning and growth experience”.

She later became Research Assistant at the then Institute for Reconciliation and Social Justice.

Specialising in Gender-based Violence and Mediation, Geraldine enrolled for a BCom (Law) degree in 2007 and an LLB degree in 2011. 

She found herself having to leave the UFS in 2014 to complete her articles, but joined the UFS again in 2018.

The journey has not been smooth, and Geraldine credits her wonderful support structure. “My family, friends and colleagues have always been there and would do anything to ease the load.
When it was tough and I wanted to give up, my husband, Teboho Lengau, was the epitome of love. He has supported me throughout the entire journey, even when I didn’t see the point any longer.

“I don’t remember a time that Sarah Phakedi, my grandmother who is 90 years old, ever doubted that I would become an attorney one day,” says Geraldine.

Geraldine also made use of the Careways Employee Wellness Programme and she appointed a psychologist to accompany her on her journey.

Referring to her time during strict COVID-19 lockdown regulations, having to juggle her time between work and studies, Geraldine says, “I was a new mommy and the baby kept me sane. However, once the restrictions had been eased, we came back to work and sometimes worked remotely from home, which has been a great opportunity to reflect on future goals.”

She says: “Knowing that I must complete everything that I start, my purpose is to help woman through Law.”

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