Makhanda poetry breakout


For young people, poetry can be more than a way to share ideas: having a way to express yourself can
be a huge relief. It’s for all these reasons and many more that the first Makhanda Poetry Revival reading session was held on Thursday 12 November 2020 at the Assumption Development Clinic in Phumlani, Joza.

Pioneered by Makhanda born creative writer Andile ‘Ecalpar’ Nayika, the plan is to unlock young people’s potential.

“The Poetry Revival sessions can be used by different people to celebrate themselves, their art and their diversity. My own life experiences have influenced my creative process and I’ve been able to use words to express myself,” Nayika said. “It can help young people believe in themselves, build self-esteem and keep off the streets.”

Nayika believes there is a need for such spaces in communities, not only for different people to express themselves, but also to explore their creativity, discover themselves and engage with different
people who share the same ideas.

“Hopefully, in future, such spaces can be part of school extra-curricular activities, rather than isolated, unrecognised spaces in society. We are looking at working closely with schools or learners to
encourage them to realise the importance of creative writing and  expression.

“There is a large proportion of young people, especially those at school in East Makhanda, who lack self-confidence when it comes to creative and constructive communication.

“This project aims at unlocking pride and self-esteem.”

“Our sessions follow Covid-19 regulations and measures in protecting people against the virus,” Nayika said. “There is hand sanitiser at the door, the windows will remain open at all times, wearing masks is compulsory during all the sessions and numbers are limited to 20 people per session which allows us to adhere to social distancing in the venue.”

The platform is free and accessible to anyone who has an interest in writing and has an interest in poetry or is themselves an aspiring or an experienced poet/creative writer in Makhanda. Donations of
books, masks and sanitiser are welcome.

The Makhanda Poetry Revival sessions are held once a week, on Thursdays at 16:00-17:00 at the Assumption Development Centre in Joza. For more information, you are free to contact Andile
Nayika on 066 030 1811. This is a platform to share and experience poetry so feel free to bring your own poetry pieces.

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