At the age of 17 Fazila lost her mother to cancer. The eldest of four siblings, without the support of her father, she took her siblings and moved out of his house. This was not the norm nor accepted at that time in her community, but it was required for their mental survival.
After receiving a University bursary she applied to pursue journalism. Without her knowledge, a friend changed her application form to B.Com Accounting instead. She only discovered this change on her first day of orientation, but decided to remain with accounting as qualifying as a CA(SA) promised to be the solution to her family’s poverty stricken situation.