Activate! Change Drivers is a growing network of approximately 3,000 young leaders across South Africa who are being equipped with the skills to respond to challenges in our society. The young people involved in this movement aim to ensure that the marginalised, segregated and disenfranchised are not left behind. Activate! joined forces with FunDza for a radio show – #ActivateHour – airing every second Thursday on Bush Radio to talk about issues prevalent in our society, from literacy to health and more besides.
Zilungile of FunDza appears on the show with Shadrack Setti of Activate! On the show, the presenters discuss issues that affect young people, whilst also delving deeper into current affairs, posing questions to listeners and getting a pulse of what is happening on the ground. On 20 September, the show focused on Heritage Day and what the heritage of a country like South Africa should look like. On the show the presenters concluded that the heritage and culture of Ubuntu should be our national pride.
The last segment of the #ActivateHour shines light on FunDza’s writers and focusing on their different writing journeys. The purpose of the #ReadingForPleasure feature is to punt the importance of igniting a reading and writing revolution amongst teens and young adults. This part of the segment is anchored by Zilungile Zimela, who interviews different writers and speaks to them about their reading and writing lives.
In the show on 20 September, we interviewed novelist, author, mentor and editor Zimkhitha Mlanzeli. She’s an Eastern Cape-born pen-smith who works at FunDza. She has written numerous stories which have been published on the FunDza mobi site and some of her stories have been published as pocket booklets or appeared in anthologies.
Having just returned from maternity leave, it was hard to get back in the writing groove, but Zimkhitha persisted, and her short story – The Little Black Book or, in isiXhosa, Incwadana Emnyama – was recently published on fundza.mobi.
When asked how she finds the courage and the passion to write she said: “Fear comes with expression and as writer you go through that fear as you express yourself, the fear needs to be felt and that is the only way you can overcome it.”
Be sure to catch the next #ActivateHour show, live on Bush Radio, on 4 October. You can follow or be part of the conversation by using the handle @FunDzaClub on Twitter and FunDza Literacy Trust on Facebook.