All Heart leads the Arts

20 students from Madlala High School and Digital Learning Centre in the rural village of Justicia will attend the Mpumalanga Arts Festival later in February, thanks to the All Heart Fund.

In many rural South African schools, there is not the time, facilities or resources to create a robust Arts curriculum. Understandably, the focus is on preparing students for mainstream subjects such as Maths and Science.

The Mpumalanga Arts Festival group

The 2013 Mpumalanga Arts Festival group

This festival is an answer to that problem. Aimed at grade 11’s and 12’s, it is a two day event offering workshops and lectures that develop an interest in Arts, culture, theatre, dance and movement. The focus is on encouraging learners to heighten their creative potential.

“In the last year, we have encouraged what we call a ‘cultural awakening’ among the young people of Justicia” says Linky Nkuna of the Madlala Digital Learning Centre.

“From empowerment programmes for girls, to sex-education, drama and public speaking, we believe that young people must have a creative outlet to be the best versions of themselves. Yes we offer digital literacy first and foremost, but we are also here to help young people express themselves, physically and emotionally.”

Busi dancing with the Madlala girls

V-Girls at Madlala

Last year Good Work Foundation (GWF) was able to sponsor ten learners for this two-day workshop, but this year, thanks to the establishment of the All Heart Fund in memory of Leanna Knopik, that number has been doubled, and GWF will be sponsoring 20 young students.

“Students at Madlala have one of the strongest connections to the All Heart Fund” says Kate Groch, Good Work Foundation CEO.

“They were the first students to learn about Leanna Knopik and how she inspired the All Heart Fund. They even contributed to the inaugural All Heart Fund event by sending paintings to Florida for auction. It seems fitting then, that this group of students are going on a trip to Nelspruit – where many of them have never been – to take part in a festival that encourages them to think about themselves, their relationships to others, and their own futures.”

Two Madlala Digital Learning Centre students had art on display for the silent auction

Two Madlala Digital Learning Centre students had art on display for the silent auction at the inaugural All Heart Event