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"Duduzile Mathontsi on behalf of Black House Kollective and eBukhosini Solutions. She is an Honour Students at UNISA and a generation of young people who were raised and mentored through Black Consciousnesses initiatives in Soweto by sisZandi Radebe- Co-Founder & Director of BHK"

A Heartfelt Gratitude to Dr. Kgafela oa Magogodi for an Inspiring Workshop at the Afrikan Winter Skool at Funda Community College

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On Sunday, June 23, 2024, Blackhouse Kollective and eBukhosini Solutions hosted a transformative Afrikan Winter Skool workshop at Funda Community College. This event, led by the extraordinary Dr. Kgafela oa Magogodi, was a deep dive into the art of storytelling, transcending traditional boundaries to explore history, life, and identity. The workshop aimed to prepare the Walimu (teachers) for the Afrikan Winter Skool, running from July 1-5 at Funda. This skool is a product of the collaborative efforts between BHK and eBukhosini’s Afrocentric education programs, which have been providing Black Consciousness-driven learning and unlearning opportunities to their communities for over a decade.

This year’s Afrikan Winter Skool focuses on storytelling as a Black love pedagogy, embracing African-centered ways of learning and sharing knowledge. Our mentor for this endeavor, the esteemed Dr. Kgafela oa Magogodi, is the visionary band leader of the spoken word and music ensemble Marabele, and a multifaceted storyteller, playwright, and director. His acclaimed works, such as “Chilahaebolae,” “Song of Nongoma,” “Book of Rebellations,” “uNosilimela,” and “Devil on the Cross,” have graced prominent stages including Wits Theatre, State Theatre, Olive Tree Theatre, Soweto Theatre, Market Theatre, and Funda Centre. Magogodi’s illustrious career includes fellowships at Literarisches Colloquium, New York University, the African Freedom Station, and Ecole Cantonale d’Art du Valais. Currently, he devotes his expertise to Wits School of Arts, facilitating practicums in playwriting, directing, and spoken word theatre. He is also a dedicated associate of Blackhouse Kollective, facilitating annual workshops for youth eager for Afrocentric knowledge.

Recently, Dr. Magogodi brought to life an inspiring project by constructing an open theatre space, GaMmatsello, in Mocoseng village, Mahikeng. Here, he trains young enthusiasts in the performing arts, nurturing the next generation of storytellers. This project, a testament to his dedication as an independent playmaker, showcases his unwavering commitment to cultivating Afrocentric narratives. We are thrilled to announce that Dr. Kgafela will share one of his captivating stories with our Wanafunzi (students) at the Afrikan Winter Skool on Thursday, July 4th

During the workshop, Dr. Magogodi guided us through the rich, playful, and emotive world of storytelling. His approach incorporated body language, laughter, and emotion, breathing life into each lesson. One particularly poignant exercise involved using old clothing items to build a meaningful and resilient rope, symbolizing Azania’s strength and rich history. This collective effort allowed us to tap into our imagination, evoking powerful metaphors that resonated with the curriculum and the realities of young people in occupied Azania. The rope we built symbolized Azania’s resilience, her rich history, and a promise of a brighter, Black-powered future.

Through storytelling, we were transported to a world of imaginative learning often suppressed in mainstream education. We reconnected with our inner selves and childhood nostalgia through activities like skipping rope, singing childhood songs, and the emotional tug-of-war, symbolizing Azania’s fragmented yet resilient spirit. Retelling African folktales such as the tale of Tselane Ngwanake, Kgodumodumo the colonizing monster, and “Lona Lothle”- the clever tortoise and the birds- all these tales painted vivid images of a mother’s love, doubt, deceit, fearlessness, politics, and societal reflections. They were a reminder of the knowledges and ways of knowing that are embedded in storytelling as originated by our GrandMothers- ooMaKhulu bethu. This workshop also served as an excellent team-building initiative for the young volunteers dedicating their time and energy to this year’s Afrikan Winter Skool at Funda.

On behalf of Afrikan Winter Skool team, eBukhosini Solutions, and Blackhouse Kollective, we extend our deepest gratitude to Dr. Kgafela oa Magogodi for this remarkable opportunity to immerse ourselves in his Afrocentric knowledge through storytelling. This workshop was not just an educational experience but a life lesson seamlessly integrating with our daily lives. We can’t wait for Wanafunzi (students) to experience your work through us!

Relebogile rre Magogodi for your generosity and for sharing your profound insights with us. Your impact on our lives and understanding of storytelling is immeasurable.

Duduzile Mathontsi on behalf of Black House Kollective and eBukhosini Solutions. She is an Honours Students at UNISA and a generation of young people who were raised and mentored through Black Consciousnesses initiatives in Soweto by sisZandi Radebe- Co-Founder & Director of BHK.

Email: nonkosi.mathontsi@gmail.com

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