Liwa Primary School Project

Gugulethu Township. Cape Town. South Africa

Our Stories

SIBONGISENI BANGANI (GRADE 7)

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My name is Sibongiseni Bangani. I am a grade 7 learner at Liwa Primary School in Cape Town. I am 13 years old. I am a short girl who likes to smile and laugh a lot. I am so curious and if at school they want someone to do something I would be the first one to stand up. I am a girl who is confident. I am a true leader who likes to listen to other’s ideas and I believe in God.

I am staying with my mother’s sister and her children. My mother passed away and my father lives in France Hook. My mother’s sister is a single parent and has to take care of us. In my home we are eight. I like staying with my family because they love me. My cousins like to see me laughing and do jokes. I also love my aunty because she wants a bright future for me. I will not let her down and this I promise and pray for.

My cousins at times tell me not to bother their mother saying mine is dead, but this does not push back but rather moves me forward. I feel so hopeless thinking of my mother. I also think that if I was staying with my mother things would not be like this.

One day I told aunty that my cousins swore at me. She beat them and shouted at them but they answered her back without respect. My aunty did not give up and she again talked to them one day politely. It was then that they understood and apologized to me, since then we have been living as a happy family respecting one another.

My school is located in Nyanga in Cape Town. It is located in a poor location full of crime and unemployment. The community is also characterized by drug abuse. Just opposite our school there are people who fix cars and the noise coming from that place at times makes it difficult to concentrate in class. Robbers are also taking chance to come as if they are working there whilst surveying on our school. This year our computer lab as well as the office was robbed and all our computers and servers were stolen. One of our female teachers was robbed early in the morning right by the gate in full view of school children. Department of Education officials are also not spared one of them was robbed at the gunpoint. This is really painful to me and other learners at my school.

At school I do not like when my peers abuse each other. I have my best friend who I like so much as if she is my sister. We like to share things. I also went to Johannesburg with her. Last year when I was in grade 6 I took part in a spelling competition sponsored by Grow Smart. The competition requires us to spell, define and use words in a sentence. It was really a challenging competition but we pulled though. At first 200 schools were selected. We went through the first round but could not make it through in the second round.

Another interesting competition was the one offered by the Department of Water Affairs. We were required to write a poem about water conservation and recite it. Through our teachers hard work the two of us, myself and Nanilethu we became provincial winners and won R4000. We then went to represent the Western Cape in Johannesburg at national level. When we were there we were very happy because it was my first time to board an aero plane and sleep in a hotel. We went there for 6days. On Monday we were looking around the hotel. On Tuesday we went for rehearsals. On Wednesday it was the competition. We recited the poem in front of approximately five hundred people. On Thursday went to Monte Casino to see and learn about the animals and being water wise. On Friday it was the day for results. We lost but we were happy of ourselves just for being able to present the poem to many people and to represent our province as well as our school. I felt greatly honoured.

The poem we recited was;

All your life depends on me
Without me your everyday meal is a dream Skip using me for a day, you stink Flies would be all over your dishes if I was not there I do not complain if you skip using me for a day It’s because you are nothing without me Plants, animals and insects I all give them life I am their redeemer, their life stream Vitamins, carbohydrates and proteins They give you, but if you eat them without washing them or your hands Germs will celebrate, hospitalization or death will follow Hate me then, and we will see who wins Underground pipes channel me to your doorstep You press your toilet cistern, you open taps and showers The house and the clothing are smart because of me Without me you are hygienically dead No industry operates without me Inspectors check my presence before granting a license That’s how important I am All these materials used I clean them Diarrhea, cholera, malaria, bacteria, eye infection, oral infection through hands, worms and skin diseases Can be eradicated with my proper use A champion among champions I am Millions are spend by government Educating people about my proper use and saving me Schools, clinics, hospitals, stations, shops, everywhere I am the topic of the day A clear indication of who the is Hate me; love me I still remain the winner There’s no you without me you get me, anywhere, everywhere, somewhere There is me, rural, urban I’m your life, your health, your savior Save me, save your life and everybody’s life All your life depends on me

After I went to Johannesburg and I lost my teachers told me that I am the winner to myself. I love my teachers because they want to see me achieve more in life. I value school a lot because it opens doors for me. I like my school because it gives children who are poor the food. I feel safe when I am at school because in my community there are many children who have already dropped out at school. These things do not easily because most of the time I am at school. I also wish God can give my teachers strength more years. It is like they are my guardian angels. My teachers show love to me and take care of all of us at school.

In my community I feel happy to see sponsors when coming and give poor food they also come and give us clothes. They show that they care about other’s feelings. What I do not like in my community are gangsters and fighting. These gangsters can kill you even when you are not a gangster. When we are going to the shop we have to the money. They don’t care about other people. They only think about themselves, they are selfish.

I like South Africa because our government gives children grants and our grandparents also go to the clinic for free. It has helped many people who are not working to take care of themselves and their children.

When I grow up I want to be a teacher so that I can share my knowledge with other children. I want to change my country to be peaceful. I want other children to have a better and a bright future. I also want my country to have people with great knowledge. I would be very happy if my country would have people with great knowledge. I would be very happy if we can work together and look forward to the future with pride and courage.

LIKHONA MVUNGE

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My name is Likhona Mvunge and I am ten years old. i am in grade 5 at Liwa Primary School. I live in Nyanga close to my school so I walk to school. I hardly take 5 minutes to get to school.

I like to wear designer clothes and my mother and father know this. I like my parents because they always buy me new clothes. I am black in complexion. I like myself because I am unique and I am not like the other children. I don’t like fighting. I like playing but my mother always tell me that I have to study; I must not play too much. My mother helps me when I am studying. I like myself and I am proud of myself.

I like my school but my school is not safe in Nyanga because there is lot of crime. My school has been robbed of many computers. I don’t like what robbers are doing in my school they are destroying our school and our future. Our parents are worried because we are not safe.

When we are going to school we are getting robbed by a gangster that is why our teachers always tell us to walk in groups. I like my teachers because they are kind to us and all my teachers are very kind but you must not mess with them.

I like my home and it is near to my school. I live with my little brother and my two sisters and my mother and father. I like my family because it supports me in every decision I make. They are not rude to me they are kind. I like my old sister because when my mother is busy she helps me when I am doing my homework. I like my brother because he makes me laugh and ha has got lot of jokes. I like my home and family members for good reasons.

In my community there are lots of drug dealers and alcohol abusers. The children are not safe even old people because there are gangsters and robbers. My father is not scared of them because he knows them even when my father walks at night. Some children are being abused by their parents. In my community there are people who are careless.

They leave their dogs in the streets. They also dump rubbish everywhere. I would like people to take care of our environment.

INGA MANYONGA GRADE 4

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My name is Inga Manyonga. I was born in 2004 on 2 July. My family has seven people. I live with my parents and my family. Our house has two rooms. I live with my grandmother, my father and my mother.

My parents give me everything I want. What I like about my parents is that they are not strict. I like to play soccer and netball. I have three friends who are very supportive. They are with me all the way. We sometimes meet and help each other with school staff. I like to read books because they are very interesting.

My favorite meal is meat and pap. I like to eat ice cream. I am a person who likes others and I am sociable. My favorite subjects are Mathematics and English, when I grow up I want to be a nurse or a teacher.

The name of my school is Liwa Primary School. My school is in Nyanga. My school was established in 1996. My school is poor and it does not claim school fees, so our parents do not stress much. I don’t like fighting at school because after fighting I feel like I did something wrong because I like to communicate well with others. Someone does something wrong to me I talk with him or her without fighting. At school there are seven subjects divided into periods and like physical education and creative arts.

At school there are sports such as tag rugby. My teachers at school are so good. When I go to school I go on foot. Mathematics and English are so good for me but personal well being I don’t like it. I love my teacher and principal at school. Our teachers do not like children who are lazy.

In my community I like to play with my friends, but it is a dirty community and it is easy for us to get diseases. In my community there are lots of youngsters who use drugs and rape others. There are also gangsters in our community. They always shoot at each other. We are scared in our community.

QHAMA NTLABATI (GRADE 6)

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My name is Qhama Ntlabati. I live in Nyanga East at Mkhonto Square with my mother, father, sister and my brother. I have one friend who is Emihle we like to spend most of our time together and our mothers are friends. She is very supportive to me and we trust each other. Attend school at Liwa Public Primary School. I love my school very much because my teachers give me lot of information and we are also winners in my school.

When I grow up I want to be a social worker, so that I can help who are struggling. I think I can change South Africa to be a better place. I wish for a bright future because of the support I get from my teachers, classmates and above all my mother. I love her more than anything. My father is working for government as a doctor and my mother is not working. In my home my mother and father always fight me when I was in grade 3, I could not concentrate at school. My father is rude in front of us. One day my father kicked us out of the house at night. We went all the way to my granny. I don’t get enough love from my father because he loves my half brothers more. I love them too. It’s only my mother who is giving me love. Where my father works my mother can’t go there because my father is cheating from my mother and he doesn’t know that I know what he is up to.

My school’s name is Liwa Primary School. It is in Nyanga, Emmis Drive. Near school there is a workshop place where they fix cars. My school has a room which when you are sick you can get help. My school is the top in my province despite being located in a poor community. In most competitions we come first. We have a lot of trophies in our cabinet at school. The mechanics bring crowds who rob our school at night. One day they robbed my teacher in front of children. It was so sad. My school is the best although it is robbed.

I live in Mkhonto. My community is dirty because of people who do not care even for their children. There is a lot of problems. Children are abused, some raped and robbed. I think I can make a difference because I am going to be a social worker.

I represented my school in the water affairs competition. At provincial level we won and I was very excited. My mother made me very happy she said ‘I am proud of you my girl’.

The poem was as follows;

Colorless and tasteless
Ability to appear in three forms Gas, liquid and solid Covering seventy per cent of the Earth Blessed to save life All these qualities I boast of Animals, people and plants All quench their thirst with me Farmers drain me from dams Boats and ships are friendly to me Through pipes I come I come to you Should I not boast? A drop lost is a drop gone My little sobs on your taps Leaking pipes and grains Unnecessary usage These are the thorn in the flesh to me Conserve! Conserve! Conserve! You need me but you careless Hydro electricity, fire fighting, radiators Your last place to the grave-mortuary I will be there for you You needed, me need me and will always need me Show enough respect and Conserve me! Conserve me! Conserve me! Millions are spend by nations Purifying me, conserving me, educating people about my proper use Wash your hands before eating Wash your hands after using the toilet Wash fruit before eating Can you wash without me? I really have an honor to boast of My absence means a lot Drought, starvation, death, lack of sanitation, barren lands, Dead corpses, animals, plants and dry rivers Who then are you without me? Why despise me the Stand up and shout Conserve! Conserve! Conserve! Water affairs department Created specifically for me Providing employment for many Why shouldn’t I brag Help the water affairs department Stand up and shout Conserve! Conserve! Conserve!

SIXOLISE KUMKATI

My name is Sixolise. My surname is Kumkati. I was born on 26 December 2003 and I am 11 years old. I live in Nyanga East in Cape Town. I am the last born out of five brothers and sisters. I was born in Eastern Cape. In my family we are seven. I live with my both parents and three sisters, including me and two brothers. My family is a big happy family.

My older brother sometimes helps me with my homework and other staff and my mother usually helps me with washing my uniform. I learn at Liwa Primary school in Grade 4. I like to eat meat. My favorite meal is meat and rice. I also like ice- cream and sweets. My favorite subjects are Mathematics and English.

My mother helps me with all of this. She makes sure that I have everything I want. My father is a person who likes to joke just like my mother. My mother and father are kind. They hate criminals. They love people that do good things. They love us a lot. They sacrifice things for us. I like playing basket ball and I sometimes go to Zolani Centre in Nyanga to practice basket ball. I have skills because I would be successful with it.

I like to go to the library and read story books because they are interesting and make me feel more curious to read them. Even at school I like to read stories a lot. When I grow up I want to be a pilot because being a pilot is expensive. You earn a lot of money, I want that money so that money so that I can help my parents build a decent home for my family.

At school there are many learners and teachers. My class teacher is Miss Banzana. She is a good teacher. She doesn’t like children who do not listen. My teachers do not like people who are lazy. You must work hard so that they can like you. My school does not claim fees and it is convenient for our parents.

At school I don’t like bullying others and treating others a way that I would not want to be treated. I also don’t like fighting because it is not a good thing to do at school. My school is a poor school but educate those who are poor. It also feed us every school days breakfast and lunch.

My community is a poor community. It is dirty and dangerous place because youngsters shoot one another because of gangsters. There are many people going to the nearest tavern and abuse drugs and alcohol and you can notice that there are many youngsters. When they abuse innocent children such as raping and doing crime, we are always scared and careful of those people.

The gangsters are getting high and youngsters are killing each other and every month. Adults look for a solution such as striking and marching but that does not stop them. They keep on doing it and the community has no solution for this.

What I like about my community is that we live in brick houses. The house is suitable for my family. In the house there are two rooms. My mother and my father are not working. They are surviving with a tuck shop money. They have a tuck shop in the house and the money save us a lot in everything.

ANATHI MATIWANE GRADE 4 MYSELF

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My name is Anathi Matiwane and I am 9 years old. I am a boy who is brown in complexion and am in Grade 4. I am short. I live in Capetown in a poor location called Nyanga. I live with my family in a three bedroomed house with a garge at the back. Our yard is big compared to other yards and as a result we can play soccer at the back of our house. We are all Christians at home and we always pray before eating and sleeping.

My family is better off compared to my neighbours. My father works at a shop selling car parts and my mother is also working. They both provide for me and my sister. We always have food on the table. I eat before I go to school and also when I come back from school. I also carry some provisions to school.

MY SCHOOL

The name of my school is Liwa Primary school located in Nyanga in the Western Cape of South Africa. My school is always clean. My school is located near the terminus and also near a busy street where people spray paint cars. My school has been robbed several times. This year thieves broke in and took most of our computers. One lady teacher was also robbed in front of us.

Although these bad things happen at my school there are a lot of good things happening. We enter into a lot of competitions like Grow smart, Water Affairs Competition and many others. Some we win and some we lose. I am proud of my school. I am currently busy preparing for the prestigious GrowSmart competition next year because I want to be part of the school team. . The competition needs hard work and I can only be selected if I prove that I am a hardworker.

My school offers the following subjects :Maths, English, Xhosa, Natural Science, Social Sciences and Life Skills. My favourite subject is Maths. My favourite sport is soccer. I wish to be a soccer player when I grow up.

MY COMMUNITY

My community is comprised of many informal settlements and a lot of shacksHigh unemployment and poverty also characterize my community. Gangsterism is also a major problem and different groups are always fighting for reasons known to them. At times they shoot at one another and innocent people at times get caught in between and die. This is what I hate about my community.

Another thing which I hate about my community is substance abuse. A lot of people are taking drugs like tik, hashish, glue and cocaine. After taking these drugs the people will not be afraid to commit crime. It pains me to see children who are supposed to be in school taking drugs and droping out of school. These drug abusers at times rape young ones. It is my wish that one day our communities will be a safe place.

NANILETHU MPENGE (GRADE 7)

“A true hero of all times. Put the school on the map when she competed in Growsmart and Water Affairs”

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My name is Nanilethu Mpenge. I am 12 years old. I am black in complexion and short. I am a girl with confidence and pride. I like reading my books, watching television, playing soccer and netball. My favourite food includes pasta with mince, lamb and chicken. I don’t like hypocrites who pretend as if they care but they don’t. I also don’t like seeing abusers who abuse their children, partners, animals, nature, drugs and alcohol. When I grow up I want to be a doctor and help sick people and animals.

I live with my mother and stepdad. My mother and father separated before I was born. We live in a six roomed house. We are five at home, my father, mother, brother, sister and me. I love living at my home because my father likes telling jokes and funny stories and have a yard to play in. On Sundays we go to church to praise God and to pray for him to keep us, our parents and everyone close to us to be safe and blessed and stay praising the Lord. I live happily at home.

My stepfather is self-employed. He owns four taxis so with the money he earns, he uses it to put food on the table for us to eat. He also buy us some other things we need regularly at home. My mother works at a salon so with the money she earns she buys us clothes and other things we need as girls.

I live in Marcus Garvey which is maybe 7 kms away from school which is in Nyanga. What I don’t like about Marcus Garvey is that there are Rastafarians smoking marijuana so they influence other boys to smoke it and get addicted to it and start doing criminal activities like robbery, vandalizing homes. When you are walking in the street you are always afraid that something of yours might be taken. I also don’t like gangsters who look at girls as their prey. I always pray that these culprits disappear from where we are because they are destroying our future.

What I like about Marcus Garvey is that there are shows which often happen at the park about life challenges that we face and how to look in the future with hope. There is also a police station near our community so it is easy to report people who do bad things to us.

I am a Grade 7 learner at Liwa Public Primary School which is located in Nyanga East. In my school there are 15 teachers, 4 in the Intersen Phase and 11 in the Foundation Phase. We also have cleaners who make our school clean and spotless. We also have cookers who cook for us so that we eat. The nutritional diet is; on Monday we eat rice, lentils with canned fish. On Tuesday we eat soya mince, carrots, rice and get apples. On Wednesday we eat samp with soya mince. On Thursday we eat rice, canned fish and some cabbage and get school feeding milk. On Friday we eat samp with beans.

My favourite teacher at school is Ms N. P. Banzana. I love her because she is a woman so she knows better about girls. When we want to know something about girls we ask her and she gives us answers, she is our counsellor and advisor. It’s not that our male teachers cannot advise us but some female issues are better addressed by females. I always pray that God protects our teachers because they are our heroes and guardian angels. They always wish us a bright future.

I like my school because there is a feeding scheme so while I am being educated I also eat at lunch time. We also have two intervals, one for thirty minutes and the other for ten minutes. We also have quads and fields to play in and beautiful gardens full of vegetables.

I have one friend at school whose name is Sibongiseni Bangani. I love her very much that I spend most of my time with her at interval time. We like playing together and giving gifts to each other.

What I don’t like about school is that there are some of my classmates who like offending me and my friend. They say that the teachers like us better than the whole class. Or school is opposite a busy place where people fix cars and spray paint them. They at times play loud music and criminals now have a hiding place. These people affect our learning environment.

We are also part of a project about life, nature and conservation. It teaches us about life and its challenges. They also teach us about how to conserve water and take care of nature and other non-renewable resources. This is offered by Grassroot Soccer, Beyond Expectation Environmental Project and Realistic. I am also a curious girl who likes to attend everything offered at school especially competitions.

Last year when I was in Grade six I took part in a spelling competition sponsored by Growsmart. The competition required us to spell, define and use words in a sentence. It was a really challenging competition but we pulled through. At first two hundred schools were selected. We went through the first round but failed to proceed to the finals in the second round. We were not worried because we knew we were winners by getting at that level.

Another interesting competition was the one offered by the Department of Water Affairs. We were required to write a poem about water conservation and recite it. Through our dedication and our teachers’ hardwork we became provincial winners and walked away with R4000. We then went to represent the Western Cape province at national level in Johannesburg.

We flew from Capetown to Johannesburg. It was my first time to board a plane. It was a dream come true. I can proudly boast infront of others that I have been in a plane courtesy of Liwa Primary school in collaboration with the Department of Water affairs. We were booked in a hotel for a whole week and this was also my first time to put up in a hotel. Life in a hotel was totally different from the one I was used to. We were served delicious food and had even a phone on my bedside for room service. I felt like a queen.

On the first day which was a Monday we were told the hotel regulations. On Tuesday we went for rehearsals and on Wednesday it was the big day (competition day). OOOH !!!!! I felt nervous but managed to pull myself up because I did not want to disappoint myself, my parents, my school, my teachers and above all my dear province. WE recited the poem in front of a sizeable crowd of about five-six hundred audience. I felt relieved after reciting and got energy from the gazes of the nodding audience. On Thursday we went to Monte Casino to learn about birds species and being water wise. On Friday the results were announced. We didn’t make it, but we were proud of ourselves. We came back with a lot of gifts from the sponsors. We received a heroes welcome at home.

The poem was;

All your life depends on me
Without me your everyday meal is a dream Skip using me for a day, you stink Flies would be all over your dishes if I was not there I do not complain if you misuse me It is because you are nothing without me Plants, animals and insects I all give them life I am their redeemer their life stream Vitamins, carbohydrates and proteins, they give you But eat them without washing them or your hands Germs will celebrate Hospitalization or death will follow Hate me then and we will see who wins Underground pipes channel me to your doorstep You press you toilet cistern you open taps and showers The house and the clothing are smart because of me Without me you are hygienically dead No industries operates without me Inspectors check my presence before granting a license That is how important I am All materials used I clean them Diarrhoe, cholera, malaria, bacteria, eye infection, Oral infection through hands, worms and skin diseases Can be eradicated with my proper use A champion among champions I am Millions are spend by government Educating people about my proper use and saving me Schools, clinics, hospitals, stations, shops, everywhere I am the topic of the day, a clear indication of who the boss is Hate me, love me I will still remain the winner There is no you without me You get me anywhere, everywhere, somewhere there is me Rural, urban I am your life, your health, your savior Save me you save your life and everybody’s life All your life depends on me

The changes I would want to be changed in my school are having some smaterials to play sport. I would also like the nutritional diet to be changed and eat some healthy food. As I said I like meat and I would to eat meat at school. I would also like to have some materials for art at the art room, because we are creative at school but we lack materials for showing it. I would also like the school to have computers again because we suffer to get information from the internet, to get the information we must go to the local library.

I wish that a change would be made in my life.

SIZIPHIWE (GRADE 7)

My name is Siziphiwe Nqakala. I am 12 years old and a learner at Liwa Primary School. I am black in complexion and I am short tempered and gifted but when someone makes angry and I get frustrated easily. I am a second in my family.

I like my mother very much because she does what-ever she can do in her power to make me have a better life. My mother is a single parent she got separated with my father she was pregnant with me. I like to sing and I am confident and I always wonder where my father is, why he is not responsibity of his child. I get bored when children are their fathers, but I don’t mind because there is someone who is taking good care of me and that is my mother.

I stay with my mother and my three sisters in a one room shack where there is no TV and fridge, we struggle a lot because we have to watch TV into other houses. We have to put food in my aunt’s house where she is staying with her husband and her children.

In the morning we have to eat some food which was cooked yesterday and when we come back from school we normally have bread and a cup of tea. At night we have to eat rice or pap with soup or cabbage.

We only eat meat twice or thrice a week. I try not to worry about my family problems by teasing other learners. I however feel bad after that. My solace comes from the fact that my mother loves me and above all God cares.

I like my school because that’s where I get knowledge and I get bored when I am not at school. I also like the healthy food we get at school every day. Teachers at our school are so motivating and hard workers.

They are our pillars of strength. My favorite teacher is Ms Banzana. They are our counselors. We also have cooks who prepare the food for us. At times I live home without eating because there will be no left- overs from the previous day but I know there will be something to eat at school. Our government is doing a good job by feeding us at school.

I am a child who obeys teachers and parents. I will do everything I am asked to do. The subjects offered at my school are Life Orientation, Math’s, English, Natural Science, Economic Management Sciences, Social Sciences, Technology and Creative arts and IsiXhosa. I am a hard worker and always thrives for good marks.

I am very disappointed with robbers who are always targeting my school. This year the school was robbed of all the computers. The robbers got in through the roof of the computer laboratory and that of the administration office. These ruthless robbers do not care about us at all. One of our teachers was also robbed by the school gate in full view of us.

One of my proud days was when I was chosen to represent the school at provincial level as a Xhosa poet. I recited the poem in Xhosa in front of a big audience. I did not let myself or my school down. I came up second and walked away with R3000. My mother, friends and school mates were proud of me.

I like my community because everyone is helping each other and people are supporting each other. What I don’t like in my community is that there are a lot of criminals many coming from our families. There is nothing that we can do because these thieves are very dangerous.

We cannot come up with solution. Government is doing whatever it can to get rid of these criminals but without our help it will not win. In our community you cannot leave you door open for a few minutes you will find it empty. We need to do something to stop these criminal activities.

YANELA (GRADE 7)

My name is Yanela Dlova and I am 13 years old. I was born on 17 August 2001 in Cape Town. I am a grade 7 learner at liwa primary school in Nyanga east near the Terminus. I transferred from Qingqa- Mntwana this year to Liwa. I transferred because my previous school was far away from where I live. It was painful to leave my teachers and classmates. I live in New Crossroads in Nyanga.

I am a child who knows her goals and went to achieve them. I am a child who obeys parents and teachers rules and do what I am told to do. I want to make my parents be proud of me not to be ashamed.

I first struggled at Liwa because I had no friends at all and knew no one. The time I got used and be friended Sinalo and Okuhle. They are as good as my old friends and I enjoy their company. I like to make jokes but I know when to stop.

My favourite food is lasagna, pap with stew or offal. My favourite dessert is apple juice and ice-cream with pudding. I like having fun relaxing with my friends. I also like reading books and giving hand in house chores. This keeps away from a lot of bad things happening around the community I live.

I live in a temporary shack and I live with two sisters, one brother and a single mother. I am the third child from the girls and there is one boy who was born after me. I live with a single parent who is working as an intern. My parents were married and broke up two years ago.

My father works as technician in Metrorail. My father doesn’t visit us at all because he is busy working. Instead of him visiting us we go and visit him. My father’s name is Mbongeni Mikel Dlova and lives in Blourberg. He sends us money and buys us stationery and school uniform.

What I like in my community is that there are clubs and organizations such as AMY BEEL which keeps children away from wrong things, which make their parents sleep with pillows full of tears. Such as gangsterism, drug abuse, teenage pregnancy.

What I dislike is that there are robbers which don’t like to see our world improving and not providing work for people. People are scared of going to the shop early in the morning and at night. It seems like we have no freedom because our parents don’t even work night shifts because they are afraid of being robbed. Even when we are going to school our parents are still worried. It’s even at school because last time Ms Nosiseko was robbed early in the morning coming to work at school and they tried to take her purse in front of the school gate and they ran away.

I really wish that there was a police office in our school so that there could be no crime and we could be also safe. In front of our school there are spray painters who have connections with criminals.

Last time in our school there were visitors from the Department of Education to check the way we learn. On their way back they were hijacked in front of the school gate trying to get out. Teachers are worried because the bosses are now afraid to visit our school.

Another crime that has happened at school was that there were robbers who got in through the office roof and stole the school’s property like computer, fridge and electricity cables. Now in order for us to use computers we have to walk for about 6 kilometers away from school and that is difficult for me because I live in Newcrossroasd.

It is easy for me to be raped in because I know no one in Nyanga hostels. Sometimes I don’t have time to go to the library because I have dishes to wash, homework to do and studying to do. In grade 6 when I was in Qingqa-Mntwana public secondary school I competed in Grow smart and I won in 1st round and I was proud of my school. In 17 August I went to the 2nd round and it was my birthday. I was so excited when we got there it hard even to eat because we were so nervous.

Unfortunately we didn’t make it.

My teacher was so stressed and my birthday was so spoilt that day and it was just everyone was bored. My true friends saw that I was withdrawn and they did everything to console me. It took time to forget the day, that’s what competitions are for.

What I like about my government is that it cares about our Education by providing food. Government tries by all its best to provide us with school needs. Even if you go to school with empty stomach there is nothing to worry about because we have breakfast to eat and lunch. Teachers treat us as if we are their children. They encourage us not to drop out of school, avoid teenage pregnancy and the crime. Every morning teacher starts with life lesson before we start to learn and study.

Every day in the morning we start by praising the Lord. Our principal doesn’t want our school to be dirty, she wants the school to be clean her name is Mrs. F Nodlela. She also gets angry when you are not wearing school uniform. She does what aver it takes to provide us with after school programs and sports so that we could be kept busy all time.

THULANI THYULU (GRADE 5)

My name is thulani Thyulu. I live in Nyanga. My school is Liwa primary. I live with my father, mother, three brothers, uncle and my cousin. My grandparents live in Gugulethu. My family live in different places. Every Sunday we eat rice, meat, carrots, potatoes and spinach. I like my teachers because they make us laugh and make funny jokes. Our house has 6 rooms.

My school is Liwa primary and is located in Nyanga township in the Western Cape. I have a lot of friends at school and I like them.

Last of last month thieves broke and stole our computers. This really affects our learning.

Most of the competitions we take part in at school are challenging but interesting. Some we win but some we lose. My school also offers quite a number of interesting subjects like Natural Sciences, Xhosa, Technology, English, Life Skills and Maths.

Nyanga is a dangerous place and it is full of drugs. Last year there was robbery at Maphindi. I felt sad about that. Last of last of last month the thieves came into the school they broke the class of teacher Xolani and took the TV. Last month they broke windows and took laptops. All the children were disappointed.

LISAKHANYA STEVEN (GRADE 6)

“ONE OF OUR SCHOOL BEACONS WHO HAS ACHIEVED A LOT IN VARIOUS COMPETITIONS LIKE WATER AFFAIRS, GROW SMART, SPELLING BEE AND MANY OTHERS”

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My name is Lisakanya Steven. I was born on 12th July 2002 at Mowbray. I am twelve years old. I live at Abonwabisi street, Old location in Nyanga East in Cape Town. My favourite sport is tennis and netball. I live with a big family at home of about 20 people. I live with my auntie, cousins and sisters. I am the last born out of three sisters. My biological mother died when I was young so that I do not even have her picture in my mind but my other sisters were atleast older when she died. I manage to survive because of my mother’s sister, she plays the role of being a mother to me and my sisters. Although she manages she struggles to make sure that we are all satisfied because she also has her own children that she must take care of.

I am a girl who is understanding even if I want something and she says she can’t afford I understand because I know what she’s going through. She depends on our grant money. She is not working because she’s already old. She feeds, educate and buy us clothes with the grant money. It’s fortunate when it comes to education because my school does not claim fees. The grant money is given every month but it’s not enough to last the month so my aunt my aunt has to borrow money for us to spend at school. Sometimes we do not carry money to school and I understand that too.

My sisters and brothers look for jobs everywhere so that they can help my aunt even if it’s a part-time job but my father who lives in Pretoria with his new family tries to transfer money every month because he’s not staying with me. He is the one who helps my aunt a lot. He helps her a lot, he buys school uniform and clothes for me. She always tell me to focus and love my school work unlike my sisters so that I can have a bright and make changes at home. She always prays for me. I wish that I was already old so that I can save her from what she’s going through and that worries her a lot. At school I make sure that I don’t disappoint her because I am her last hope.

I learn at Liwa Primary school in grade 6. My class teacher is Mr A. Gumindoga. He is a nice teacher. He teaches us a lot. He is from Zimbabwe. At Liwa there are fourteen teachers. They do everything in their strength to make sure that we achieve, although it is a poor school. There are no fees to pay and our parents can afford the school. If the school claimed fees I will never be at school and learn. It is also easy because the school is near and there is no need for transport. At school I try my best to make my parents happy and proud of me. I am confident and like to be the first and doesn’t make anything bring me down. At school my peers have some kind of jealousy and they have negative peer pressure. I stand up and reject them. I am a girl who knows what she wants especially when I think of where I am and how I survive.

I am a girl who communicate well with my peers so that they can respect me as well because I like to be respected. All I like about my school is that it is affordable and it has sports to entertain us, so every single child can also be good at sports if he/she’s not good at books. Government supports my school. Government feeds us with breakfast and lunch for those who come to school hungry because of porverty and those who face serious problems like lack of money. I am one of them. That can some times affect us during school.

In my community there are many accidents and crimes because of poverty. Many youths end up taking drugs, commiting crime and becoming gangsters. They give up hope of looking for jobs and some are persuaded to leave school by their wrong friends or problems faced at home. The rate of crime is increasing because my community is poor and many children are affected by social problems and they cannot stand it so they turn to drugs and crime.

Some girls when they see the sacrifice that is done by the parents for them to survive, they end up being prostitutes. They do anything even if it’s illegal so they can make change, that’s what I don’t like about my community. All I like is that shops are cheaper so that we can afford. In my community one hand washes another which means we help each other no matter the situation is. In my community we have proper roads, signs and pumps unlike other communities.

Children can see the road and signs clearly and the rate of cars knocking children is not high and our schools try their best to warn children about road safety, that’s what I like about my community and I am proud of it although it is poor.

We have small houses and big families like mine. We also have electricity and taps. Our community is also with geysers from Municipality. Municipality supports my community a lot. The geysers makes it easier for us when going to school to wash. Toilets are outside and it’s difficult to take a walk to the toilet at night. Despite this I am proud of my community.

I was also in a competition of Water Conservation and Sanitation, reciting a poem written by my teacher and we won in the province and I was happy and excited and our school was proud of us and I was proud too that my school can do something although poor. We were then supposed to go to Gauteng for finals we went by an aeroplane.

We stayed in a hotel. When I boarded the aero plane I was excited and scared at the same time because it was my experience to fly, it was also my first to stay in a hotel. I experienced more there.

On Monday we went for rehearsals with the group of students who won with us in Western Cape. We were supposed to recite the poem several times until we were perfect. On Wednesday it was the day all provinces competed including us. The results were announced at the same time and we did not make it but we were proud of ourselves because we got to the finals. We then enjoyed ourselves because lost with pride and still had two days before going home. At home I was welcomed with a braai by my mother and I was happy to see her excited. She was proud of me and I was proud of her too.

The poem was;

Colorless and tasteless
Ability to appear in three forms Gas, liquid and solid Covering 70% of the earth Blessed to save life All these qualities I boast of Animals, people and plants All quench their thirst with me Farmers drain me from dam Boats and ships are friendly with me Through pipes I come to you Should I not boast? A drop lost is a drop gone My little sobs on your taps Leaking pipes and drains Unnecessary usage These are the thorns in the flesh to me CONSERVE ME! CONSERVE ME! CONSERVE You need me but you care less Hydroelectricity, firefighting, radiators Your last place before the grave …mortuary I will be there for you You needed me, need me a And you will always need me Show enough respect and CONSERVE ME! CONSERVE ME! CONSERVE ME! Millions are spend by nation Purifying me, conserving me Educating people about my importance Wash your hands before eating, Wash your hands after using the toilet Wash fruits before eating Can you wash without me? I really have an honor to boast of My absence means a lot Drought, starvation, death Lack of sanitation, barren lands, Dead corpses, animals, plants and dry rivers Who the are you without me Why despise me then Stand up and shout Conserve!!! Conserve!!! Conserve!!! Water Affairs Department Created specifically for me Providing employment too many Why shouldn’t I brag? Help the water affairs department Stand up and shout with them Conserve!!!! Conserve!!!! Conserve!!!!

Zethu Ndleleni (GRADE 5)

OUR OWN BUDDING AUTHOUR

My name is Zethu Ndleleni. ”Little Editor” is the name they give me at school. I will write about its origins later in the story. I am in grade 5 at Liwa Primary School. I am 11 years old. I have an afro hair because I like afro. I am brown in complexion. I am a short girl with black hair. I have brown and white eyes and black eyelashes.

I am thin and I like lollipops. I am Xhosa and we speak Xhosa at home. I am wearing size 8-9 clothes and size 13 shoes. I am right handed.

Others are saying that I am brave and I believe them. I don’t like to fight and I don’t have scratches like the others who like to fight. I care about others and myself.

The name of my school is Liwa Primary School. My school is in Nyanga Emms Drive 4th street 7755. In front of my school there are people who fix cars. They disturb us when we are learning and make a lot of noise. One day they had come to our school and stole the computers. Now we have to spend more money to go and search at the library. Sometimes we don’t easily get the information while we are supposed to search it at school.

My class teacher is Mr. B Magopheni. In my school we have 14 teachers. There are 4 teachers in the intermediate phase. There are eleven teachers in the foundation phase. School starts at 8 am and dismiss at half past two. First break we get food from the kitchen. We normally eat rice, sump with fish and lentils. After this we also get a fruit or milk at times. In the morning we can help ourselves with pap.

At school there are poor children who do not have school shoes, socks and uniform. Others go to school hungry. We collect money in my class or buy him/her a pair of shoes, socks and him or her a school uniform.

SIPHOKUHLE (GRADE 6)

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My name is Siphokuhle Ngubelanga I am 12 years old I was born in the Western Cape on 07/10/2002. I live with my mother and brother. My other family members live in different places, but there are some who live Nyanga.

Some Sundays we eat meat and rice some Sundays we eat different food like sausage. When we don’t have money we eat food which we have at home like sandwich.

When it’s December sometimes we go to the Eastern Cape but sometimes we go to Summer Greens or Khayelitsha. What I hate about Eastern Cape is the weather. I am scared of the weather because there is lightning which can kill you.

When I grow up I want to be a teacher so that I can give other children knowledge. I would also like people to like what I do so I can also like what they do.

In my school there is a small kitchen and old children like to bully small children and take their food. What I hate about school is being bullied by older children they can take your staff and money.

Going to school is a good thing that can help me and other children when they grow up. Some children don’t go to school because of lack of money. Some drop school because they don’t have sufficient money to buy uniform or money for lunch.

What I like about school is that you are not only there to get knowledge you also play sports. At school some children develop their skills like drawing, soccer, art, drama etc. You are nothing without school, school is important.

I live in Nyanga East. In my community bad things happens some people drink alcohol which is bad for your health some children take drugs and that is also bad for health too when drunk some people abuse their families.

What I hate about my community is that there are lots of thieves. Every day you have to be scared, some days especially in winter your will hear gun shoots and many thieves have died because they fight and kill each other.

What I like is that in my community there are many people unlike surburs. I also hate people who abuse children, in our community a lot of children have been raped and even kidnapped. This is the bad side of my promising community.

NALEDI NOOI (GRADE 7)

My name is Naledi Nooi, I am a grade 7 learner at Liwa Public Primary School. I live in Zwelitsha drive M1106 Vukani Street. I live with my father, aunt, cousin, sister, and a brother, my sister is 4 years old and my brother is two weeks born. I love myself and I am ambitious, confident, clever girl that loves school a lot and is respectful but respect those who respect me. I don’t like gossiping because it shows you that you are a failure.

I love my school and I am a curios girl, during the first term I met a friend that destroyed my life, she quit school during the 2nd term because she lost her Textbooks. She didn’t tell her mother and started smoking marijuana; she bought it at a home one house away where she stays. She changed my life and convinced me to stop going to school. I enjoyed it but then I got bored of doing nothing.

About a few weeks later my grandmother told my teacher about the things I did and the teacher told the social workers, which looked for me and took me back to school. I then became the Naledi I was back then, I felt happy and thankful to my supportive teachers, principal and school friends.

I live in a community that doesn’t care about children or young adults. In my community there is lot of witchcraft, gangsters and lack of encouragement. There are no workshops or projects to keep children away from the gangsters. The community doesn’t have enough resources to open projects and there are lots of thieves that destroy the community even worse. Computers were stolen by thieves and the thieves live in the same community but the culprits were not found. It was not the 1st time computers were stolen.

We enter many competitions at school. Last year we participated in Grow smart and I was part of the team. We won in the 1st round but in 2nd round we lost. We all cried but we appreciated the help from our teachers namely Andrew Gumindoga, Mbulelo Ganamfana, Bongisisa Magopheni and Noluthando Banzana.

Another competition we entered in was one sponsored by the department of water affairs. We were required to draw a poster showing how best water can be saved. I liked the challenge from the word go. I thought about how best I could present it. I took my time and finally came up with a beautiful poster with a message. I presented it at provincial level and I came 2nd. Oh!!! What a great achievement for me and my school. I was proud of myself. I walked away with R3000. What a big amount for my struggling family.

I live with my father, grandmother, aunt and cousins. My mother was arrested for shoplifting. It is a very hard and painful step for me because I have to look after my young sister and brother. Especially looking after my brother because he is very young and he needs a mother next to him. I like them a lot and thank God for the family He gave me, I appreciate it.

I have a new friend called Siyamthanda Tenza, she learns at Dr Nelson Mandela High School and she knows my situation so she’s the one that encourages me all the time. I blame myself and regret the time I spent with the wrong people but I thank God because I am who I am now because of his help.

Siyamthanda is my cousin but she doesn’t live with me and we love each other a lot and the time I was going the wrong path, she was hurt and very confused and didn’t know how to help me. She always helps me when I need guidance and she will never gossip about me as the other girls do. I trust her.

My father works and he buys me and buys food for us everytime, he get paid. he loves us and his mother in Gugulethu, wants me to stay with her but I don’t want to be far from my father because I love him a lot, because he is a supportive father.

When I grow up I want to be a lawyer because I have seen many people being arrested for things they didn’t do, and they spend many years in jail for things they didn’t do and they lose everything they had. the culprits walk free in the streets and commit crimes and they are not arrested so I want to defend people like that.

Lawyers of today don’t make good work as I have seen. and it hurts very much to be arrested for something you didn’t do at all. i love myself and I am ambitious, confident and clever girl that loves school a lot and is respectful but I respect those who respect me. I don’t like gossiping because gossiping shows you are a failure.

I am getting back to who I was and it is because of the encouragement from my principal, friends, teachers and family and also the social workers that helped me.

SINOVUYO TOTOLO GRADE 4

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My name is Sinovuyo Totolo. My clan name is Mabhayi. I live in Nyanga East in Cape Town. I am a girl aged 9 years old. I was born on 24 March 2005. I am in grade 4. Originally I come from Dutywa in Eastern Cape. It is a rural village with dusty roads we came to Cape Town to live with my working father. I am good at singing. I also play tag rugby. I am also good at school. My favorite subjects are English and Math’s.

I live with my mother, father, aunty, sister and my two brothers. My father works in the construction industry and my mother is a cooker at orphanage. They really take good care of us though they do not have enough money. At home we normally eat rice, pap, samp with meat or cabbage. Early in the morning before going to school I eat cornflakes and in the afternoon bread. I am an ambitious girl who intends to be a doctor when I grow up. I really like working and help sick people. I will work hard to achieve my dreams.

My school is Liwa Public Primary. It is in Nyanga. I am in grade 4 at Liwa. My principal is Mrs. F M Nodlela. There are 17 teachers in my school. I love my school. This year we wrote Annual National Assessment [ANA] and in English I came the top one with 42 out of 50. I was proud of myself and I am still proud. I want to aim higher than this. I love that at school our teachers love us all.

I remember one day I saw a spider in my friend’s porridge, I was so scared and I did not finish my porridge, and I put it in the dish. At school we get food. We have porridge in the morning, sump or rice at break time and a fruit or milk in the afternoon.

I live in Sine Avenue Street. My community is dirty. People abuse alcohol. They rape children and women. They steal things from others like a cellphone, radios, and televisions. They sell drugs, drink alcohol, rape children and kill others. Some join gangsters. In my community we are in danger every time.

I don’t like the things that people are doing in my community. I want to stop that but I don’t know how because I am young. I hate hunger, crime, drugs, alcohol and gangsters. Crime is destroying my lovely community. Hardly a week passes without something bad happening in my community. It is my wish that everyone must stand up against crime. I would be very happy if we can work together and look forward to our lives.

ZENITHI (GRADE 7)

My name is Zenithi Maki from Nyanga in Cape Town. I am 14 years old. I was born in Butterworth Hospital in Eastern Cape. When I was only 3 years I went to Ngqamakwe to stay with relatives. I have never stayed with my mother. I then went to stay with my grandmother’s sister and her husband. When I was 7 years I went to the Spring Junior Secondary School. In 2010 I came to Cape Town to stay with my father’s parents. There were two girls and I was the third one but they treated me differently.

At school I was chosen to join the ASP Bridges of hope and on the first day I went home at 4:00 and was asked where I was coming from. When I tried to explain I got a clap. The next day was a Friday I went to my grandmother I told her and she said I better stay with my aunt who is a domestic worker.

When I arrived at Nyanga it was a sigh of relief but after some month’s things changed. I became a lazy girl; I stole money from my aunt’s boyfriend according to him and my aunt. When I asked her to buy me new shoes was always an excuse that she had no money. I again asked her to buy me math’s book but she gave another excuse. This time she clearly told me not to ask from her because she was not my mother.

She always says things which are very hurtful to me especially when she is drunk.

Sometimes I sleep without eating especially on weekends because she is always away. At my church we often attend night services on Saturdays and I inform her before Saturday and she would agree. On the day when I am preparing for church she will tell me not to go. When she has a problem with me she doesn’t talk to me. She will go and tell the neighbor that I don’t respect her. When I tell her about the competition that I will participate in she doesn’t care. She does not encourage me in everything. She has no faith in me.

There is only one person that has faith in me, my friend, Khanyisa Nhose. I like to read, write and I often write about the things that hurt me a lot. I also like to write poems about life around us and our living conditions. Poems like Umbulali lizwe [THE KILLER OF THE NATION], like Ndenzeni[WHAT HAVE I DONE] I like this poem because it talks about abuse. I believe that Education comes first and I believe in helping people. I love tata Madiba’s words; ‘Education is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world’. I also like Bill Withers’ song which says ‘Lean on me’. I like the part that says;

Lean on me
when You are not strong
And I will be your friend 
I will help you carry on 

For it won’t be long
Till ‘am going to need
Somebody to lean on

I would like people to lean on me as Bill says. Bill is my role model because he gave himself up to help others. I wish I could do that to myself. When I grow up I wish to be a scientist because of scarcity of black scientist and now I wish to become a poet. I also see my talent in poetry.

LISAKANYA SAKI (GRADE 4)

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My name is Lisakhanya. My surname is Saki. I was born in 2004 that means I am 10 years old. I like to eat fruit and vegetables and I am a girl. My school’s name is Liwa Public Primary school and I am in grade 4. My school is in Nyanga. I come from Dutywa at Ngxakaxa location. I love to sing and read some things like magazines or my books. When I am at home I like to watch television or go to the library.

In our house we have two rooms. We stay at number 3 Block 20. I have a small sister and she was born in 2013 and her name is Likuwe, her nickname is Nopinki. I have two cousins Abenathi and Nizibone. Abenathi is learning at my school and she is six years old and Nizibone is three years old, she likes to play with toys. I love my family and my family also loves me. I have a brother he is seventeen years old. He is going. University next year, he likes to sing.

My school is very clean on Monday we recite our poem or talk about the Bible. Our principal is Miss Nondlela and our principal is cute. I love her because she is proud of us and we are we are also proud of her. In my school we have many classrooms and sufficient teachers. They are nice and cute.

I love my school every day our teachers advise us that there is a time to play and a time to listen and speak. Everything has its own time. My class teacher is Ms. Banzana. In my school there are no bullies. We love our school, we love our teachers. At our school we eat rice or stamp, soya, fish and vegetables.

The name of my community is Nyanga. In my community there are some people who abuse alcohol. The are many criminals in my community. There are people who are selling drugs. In my community there are people who rape young girls. There are people who are killing others.

In my community at night the criminals to the taxi rank who rob people who are going to some places. Last week they robbed my sister her cellphone. They took her money. They beat my sister’s friend because she had nothing.

OLWETHU HLANGA (GRADE 7)

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My name is Olwethu Hlanga and I am 13 years old. I am in grade 7 at Liwa Primary School. I have one sister and a brother. I am a skinny girl and brown in complexion. I live in Nyanga East with my mother, sister, brother and grandmother. My parents are separated but my family is still special to me and is happy with it.

My father used to love me because I’m his first born but now he got married and forgot about me. When I’m at home I always think of the good days. He used to have parties for me but not anymore. He favors his other kids that I once asked my teacher why my father was like that.

My teacher told me that my father loves me very much and I was very happy to hear that. My school makes me very happy because the teachers treat us like their own children. The teachers give us advice on everything. It’s hard to live in the community where I live because there are a lot of people dying because of gangsters and a lot of teenage girls smoke and get pregnant. Sometimes I wish I could leave my community because it’s hard to face the problems in my community.

When I walk to school there is a dump nearby my school where refugees fix cars. I wish that dump place could be cleaned up and people could build a place for homeless people. I love people and I don’t care if they do not love me. But what I do not like the most is that teenage girls get pregnant and they drop out of school, and when they drop out of school they start drinking alcohol. When you drop out of school you won’t have a bright future.

My mother used to say to me, no matter how much power you have you won’t have a bright future if you don’t go to school. Education is the key of life. It is the key to success and everything you want in life. When I grow up I want a doctor so that I help sick people and when you help sick people you decrease the death rate in the country.

I started learning at Liwa Primary when I was six years old. I loved my school from the start. My favorite subjects are Math’s and English.

What I about the school is that the teachers treat us like their own children and we also give them respect to our parents. They give us encourage us and also guide us. They give us good direction.

The reason I am at school is because I want to be there and my teachers and parents want me to have a bright future. I really love myself and I don’t care if you talk about me about my name behind my back because my mother told me that people who gossip about someone behind the persons back are scared of that person and they should be not taken care of.

Sometimes I wish I go places that I never went to like Britain and USA. When I grow older I want to travel the world so that I can see the world. I once did something that I never thought I would do and regretted doing it. We were playing in the classroom when I was in grade 6. We took off same other boys’ school trousers and the cleaner saw us then he told the teachers. The teachers said we should come to school with our parents. The teacher told our parents what we did and they were very disappointed. It was me, Sibongiseni, Nanilethu, Bongi and the boy name is Khwezi. Our parents said we should say we are sorry to the boy. We said we are sorry to him and we regretted what we did to him. Khwezi loved to make jokes and he made everyone happy. I hated myself for what I did but because he was kind, he forgave me. Now I am 13 years old in grade 7 and I am a teenager. I don’t love being a teenager because a lot of things change in my body and I don’t like changes.

At home they say I have moods. They say at the one moment I am angry and at the other moment am happy. I don’t like to hear what they say and I don’t see myself changed. But it’s almost the end of the year and the following year maybe I will better and be used of being a teenager.

I never noticed that i changed and when someone shouts at me I feel discontented and when I am discontented I really need to be consoled. All I need is to be happy but I don’t see that happening because people say that I am a moodily girl.

I hate it when people are not friendly to me because I don’t like to have enemies. Enemies always prove you wrong, so I don’t like that with other people. Next year we are going to another school and we will be joining another team. I am looking forward to go to another school and join another team.

KANYISA NHOSE (GRADE 7)

My name is Khanyisa Nhose. I am 13 years old and I am a Christian. I am short tampered but kind and generous. I live with my 5 siblings in my home. There are 3boys 2girls. My father is Ngenisile Mangi and my mother is Thozama.

I am no longer staying with my mother; she got separated with my father in 2009. In 2009 I was eight years old. My father was always beating my mother and it’s not that he was beating her with no reason. Every time when my father was at work, my mother was sleeping with many men in my father’s house.

I was very depressed. I didn’t know what to do, and my father was very angry, if we tried to cry, he would beat us. Many people in my community were saying my mother is a slut. It was very hard for us. We tried not to think about what was happening at home, but it kept on coming back. I was young but I felt for my father.

My father is working in Secupro, he is a security guard. He is always working at night. One day when my father was at work some thugs tried to rob us but we screamed until people woke up. it was during the night.

In our home thugs are not afraid to get in because they know there’s no one who is old. At night we do not always sleep well because we are afraid tha robbers may come. The meagre slary which my father gets is not enough to buy us food and clothes. Its been years now since my father bought something new for the house like furniture. Wer are also staying in an old house with a leaking roof.

Neighbours are also gossiping about us but there is nothing we can do to stop it. Our relatives who should be so close to us are turning their backs on us because the are financially better than us. Its really harde to be us but through thick and thin we are pulling through.

We are no longer staying with our mother because of what she was doing. My father got tired and chased her out of his house. We really mic her at home. When we are coming back home after school some children in their houses are always eating but we don’t. We have to cook food for ourselves everytime we get home.

We get time to study at night because in the afternoon we have to wash dishes and clean our house. Sometimes I don’t study because my father likes to bring people home, so that they can drink alcohol till 12midnight if he gets paid. Sometimes when we go home after school, We don’t take off our uniforms because there are people who will be drinking alcohol at our home, with my dad.

Every month at home my father buys food with his meagre salary. At home we normally eat rice and samp. We don’t eat meat every time we eat it at the end of the month or not at all.

My older sister is always cooking for us but sometimes she doesn’t cook for us. I am always saying that I miss my mother but my siblings are always getting bored when I am saying that especially my old sister.

Like now it is going to be December, Children are going to wear nice clothes and expensive shoes. We don’t even know what we are going to wear because there is no money to buy clothes for all of us. Life is not an easy game. I want to grow older so that I can my right choices in life.

I don’t even know if I will sill success in life because of our situations at home, but I will try my best. Sometimes I try to act as if there is nothing that bothers me but deep inside I know there is something that makes me discontented. Sometimes when I am at school I wish it will never be half past two so that we can go in our homes because I know the situation at home.

I am a grade 7 learner at Liwa primary school in Nyanga near to terminus on 4th street. I started at Liwa when I was six years old. My class teacher is Mbulelo Ganamfana, he teaches history and geography. We really love our teacher because he is very nice and he likes to make jokes.

My favourite teacher is Noluthando Banzana. She is very kind and nice. I like her because she is always advising us and she loves children. However I love all my teachers.

At school I like that our teachers are always teaching us, and there’s also food at school to eat. I have four friends at school, I love them very much and they are nice to me. In my classroom I love all my classmates they are very kind and nice. I really love them.

I hate when our school is always robbed because our school is near people who deal with thugs. Our school was robbed by thugs and they took our certificates, computers and medals. One of our teachers was robbed of her cellphone. They also hijacked some people who came from Department of Education.

At my school there are always competitions we always take part in. In 2013 when I was in grade six I took part in a competition. It was at Parow High school. I had never been there it was my first time.

Firstly we were practising for that competition and it took us a month. We were helped by teacher Andrew Gumindoga, he was very nice to us. We were spelling, defining and making sentences. In July we went for the competition. It was a tough competition but still great. We won in 1st round.

In August we went for the 2nd round but sadly, we didn’t win. It was very sad and I felt like crying a lot but crying was not going to make me win. I am so grateful to my teacher who helped us a lot, he was always there for us he never left us. I wish he can do that to other children even if they don’t win. He must be strong and carry on with his work. I wish him good luck in his life.

I live in Nyanga. In my community there’s a lot of crime. Many people always get shot. People are drinking alcohol a lot. My neighbours are gossipers. They like other people’s news. There are many thugs in my community smoking drugs. They are doing bad things to people and people are afraid of them. You will never open your door in the morning, afternoon or night and go to your neighbour they will take all your belongings. They don’t sleep at night they are always awake because they are using solvents and other harmful drugs.