Most significant change stories

Story Powered Schools campaign

“Ngingcelisa ulwazi (Breastfeeding Knowledge)”

Balungile Ngema, Ilembe SS 2018

My name is Balungile Ngema from Ilembe District. When I arrived at Nal’ibali, I didn’t have an interest in reading, but I’m currently studying for Diploma in education. I used to only read for my assignments and to just pass and finish my diploma. Being with Nal’ibali has helped and nourished my mind. I’m now reading for understanding not reading to get qualifications. I graduated this year and it was easy to study.

I was fortunate because my diploma is based on foundation phase and I will be working with children so being in reading clubs has been very helpful. I’m also a mother of twins, who are ten years old and they are currently in Grade 5. I used to only do home works and I didn’t have much time for them. When I was home, I didn’t have time to read them, but since I joined Nal’ibali there is a reading time at home, and I read for them twice a day.

Since we have adopted the reading culture, I have noticed some improvements but also learnt the kinds of the books that they love to read. I’ve noticed that the other twin loves the book narrates about history of South Africa, because she has shared the story about Winnie Mandela. She read my cousin’s grade 11 book and that’s where she learnt about Winnie Mandela. When she comes across words that she doesn’t understand, she will ask me for their meaning. So being at Nal’ibali has really influenced the culture of reading in my home and the twins now have the journals where they record the books that they have read. They have set themselves a goal to record the number of goods they’ve read till they reach grade 11.

They have learnt that when mom is studying, we should also read our books. I’m very happy, because I’m 30 years old this year and I’ve bought myself a book for a the very first time. I bought a book called “A rose that grew from a concrete” written by a local author Sibonga Dlomo. It was an interesting book and I read it in one day. It is now displayed at home and that’s my first book at the age of 30. Nal’ibali has really helped a lot, so that’s my story.

“What’s my story, what’s my destiny?”

Lindiwe Sangweni, Ilembe SS 2018

Before I joined Nal’ibali, I had lost hope in life and I ignored the things that I was passionate about. I used to be a reader, I enjoyed reading and drawing. I saw a Nal’ibali post and I applied. I remember my mom said one thing, she said if the job is meant for me, I will get it, so I mustn’t feel bad if I don’t get the job, because that will mean, it wasn’t meant for you.

Little did I know that I will get the job, little did I know that it will change my life. Through working for Nal’ibali, certain parts of my life got sparked and the passion was revitalised, and my purpose was also set. I started reading again, there was a book that really gave me courage, the book called African Myths and Tales, In the book, there was a story called the Python and Phenom. I love reading and there are times when I get spiritually involved with the book. I then realised the message behind the book, and I was impressed.

I started imagining how it could be and what will that be if children were to read books about preserving history and African spirituality. After that story I started asking myself, “why am I not writing stories?” I got myself a laptop and I started gathering books with African stories, I also downloaded Adobe creative scripts for digital stories. I started writing children stories, I’m currently working on children coloring books using my art skills. I’m now serving my purpose, because I have learnt that to heal the nation through story writing and art. I’ve discovered my purpose.”

“Umuntu ngumuntu ngabanye abantu (No man is an island)”

Lungelo Mhlongo, SS 2018

My name is Lungelo Mhlongo and I’m from Elembeni in Maphumulo area. The most significant story for me as a story sparker is a story about two boys from the community of Kolweni Primary School. They were delinquent children and community members use to judge them. They were also from poor background, so most people thought they will quit school, because of their delinquent behaviour. Some teachers use not to involve them in some of the school activities, because they were destructive in class.

When Nal’ibali was introduced in their school, they participated in Nal’ibali activities like supplements and that positively influenced their behaviour. As a result, these boys started showing interest in some of the school work and the teachers noticed some improvements.

The community and the school principal started supporting them with some school uniform and they looked clean and presentable. They community showed lot of support and contributed a lot towards their wellbeing. The boys then showed increased self-esteem, they were motivated as result they participated in most of the school activities, they also participated in the reading club showcase competition and the school won an award in the iLembe district. The community also celebrated with them and congratulated them for winning the reading club showcase.