Umzobo Wam is Xhosa for my drawing, or my story.
Umzobo Wam – the official beneficiary for the Tourism Month photography exhibition – is an initiative in Nelson Mandela Bay which provides children with a means to self expression through art and photography. Our current project focuses on the township of Gqebera (Walmer). Not all children here have access to materials or education that are able to encourage creative self expression. Between Monday and Thursday, we host around 20 – 25 children aged 7 to 11 years in our after school art program. The program provides a safe space for children to engage in art and educational games, as well as receive help with their homework.
We dropped in with Kat and asked her a few questions.
Happy Women’s Day! Thank you to the wonderful Sive, a local female Xhosa artist, who came to inspire our kids with her ceramics workshop. #umzobowam #sive’swalkingcanvas #clay #sharethebay #coloursofyousa #portelizabeth #southafrica #womensday
A photo posted by Umzobo Wam (@umzobowam) on Aug 8, 2016 at 10:03am PDT
Umzobo Wam uses art and photography as a non-threatening means to encourage self expression. We believe that children should be encouraged to tell their own stories and to make sense of the world around them as they see it. In this sense, we nurture, not quash, their natural sense of wonder, curiosity and belief that anything is possible. Realising their right to self expression also acts as a safety mechanism. A child knows that they can communicate or ask for help if something is happening to them that they feel is not right.
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