By William Bosch
I am a third year student at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology. As part of my 3rd year, I had to gain some practical work experience within my field of study: Journalism.
After a grueling process of applying at various places, I thankfully attained a place at FunDza Literacy Trust, an NGO that aims to grow generations of educated and empowered individuals through literacy. FunDza’s online platform – fundza.mobi – hosts a wide range of blogs, articles and stories published by FunDza and written by both professionals and the many young people they reach, the FunDza Fanz. It houses a cultural melting pot of creativity, made possible by the editing team – FunDza’s backbone.
I approached FunDza for an internship as I wanted to be part of an organisation that was igniting social change. Arriving at work on my first day, I was filled with a sense of pride and belonging, that was bolstered by the knowledge that my work would help those whose stories needed sharing. FunDza’s work aims to shift attitudes, open up readers to new ideas and information, and provide a space for those who may otherwise be voiceless to share their stories and be heard.
FunDza has become more than just my place of work – it has become a part of my life, bringing with this challenges and fine moments. It’s an experience I will never forget.
I remember my first day. Entering a room with five people. There was the distinctive noise of fingers typing on keyboards – this was soon to become a comfort in ways I’d not imagined possible. Work life isn’t just about deadlines or doing your part in aligning to the expectations of the organisation – all of which is a part of the stress and rewards that it brings. But it is so much more than that: work holds a fundamental place in balancing one’s own mind.
Even though I’d felt lost and unbalanced in the last year, what stands out most is the humanity and passion of my fellow editors who have become my colleagues, friends, family and daily reality away from home. Their willingness to help, encourage and remain focused was humbling. They gave me the courage to persevere and carry on with passion – even in those times where the noise we often have in the background is loud and adverse. Life can feel like a sea of worries, and so work – where we come together to collectively help others – can become a refuge.
I’ve enjoyed the work I’ve been given. Story telling lies at the heart of the organisation. So dealing with text has helped me to improve my editing and language skills. The stories I’ve edited are now memories I hold dear in my heart, they have helped me gain perspective over some of the questions I’ve had about life and the demands and challenges that come with it. These stories – whether happy or sad – always brought feelings of comfort and the desire to live with purpose.
Thank you, FunDza, for the opportunity.