Nal’ibali, the national-reading-for-enjoyment campaign, has announced 11-year-old Lindiwe Makhoba from Mangaung, Bloemfontein, as the national winner of its annual storytelling contest, Story Bosso. Chosen from over 6 000 entries collected from across the country, Makhoba’s winning entry, My Life as a Princess, is a masterfully-told, multilingual poem with the power to inspire the nation.

Each year Nal’ibali hosts its month-long Story Bosso drive in September or Literacy Month, to encourage members of the public, young and old, to get storytelling in their home languages. A simple yet effective method to lay the literacy foundations that children will need to learn to read and write; storytelling is something that anybody can do: anytime, anywhere. The sharing of stories is also part of the collective culture and heritage of all South Africans.

This year the talent search attracted a record number of entries and included a provincial road-show with celebrated storytellers, including Gcina Mhlope and Sindiwe Magona, giving special demonstrations of their craft to adults and children in different parts of the country. Driving the initiative at local level, Nal’ibali Literacy Mentors held over 100 audition and entry events in seven provinces to source stories directly from communities and from Nal’ibali’s network of over 1 000 reading clubs.

Makhoba, a Nal’ibali reading-club member, entered at Kgato Primary School where she attends school, and where her win was announced on Friday 27 October. With a passion and talent for poetry… continue reading