#ChangingTheStory – Part 2

2017 is an exciting year for us, as the #ChangingTheStory team at the University of Leeds are building on their collaboration with the Bishop Simeon Trust and Themba Interactive. This year we will be working with more of the  Community-Based Organisations that Themba are involved with, to create more short films about the challenges that youths in these communities face. More specifically, we are now working with the developing Youth Committees in these CBOs to create films and other resources. They will then be able to use these resources to generate awareness about these issues, and use them as tools for advocacy.  Ultimately giving them the power to Change The Story.

As we are now developing the #ChangingTheStory project further, we are also welcoming a new project partner, the Johannesburg Holocaust and Genocide Centre. With them, we will be working with the Youth Committees to contemplate deeper, the importance of Human Rights. In doing so, we will examine the issue of xenophobia and also create films that generate awareness on this particular issue which has been developing in South Africa. This stage of our project will kick off at the start of April, when the JHGC will be hosting a week-long workshop for the Youth Committee leaders. So watch this space to see what kinds of resources our talented youths create!

In the mean time, we are working with the Youth Committees to build their leadership skills and engage with a wide range of issues that are prevalent in their communities. So we will be posting weekly updates on what we’ve been up to -please keep posted and help us to share the #ChangingTheStory message!

Daniela from Leeds and Sne from Themba are now working together with the Youth Committees from the Bonisiwe Field Project and Repheleng Care Centre safe parks.

Time Wasted Can Be Regained

The fourth film from Tshepo Hope was made by our oldest group. These 11-14 years olds wanted to tackle the issue of drug abuse in their community, something which is becoming increasingly rife amongst the community’s youth. Watch below to see our group’s take on drug abuse, why it happens, and how this issue could be resolved.

Heaven Hugged Me

Our third film from Tshepo Hope, was made by a talented group of 6 – 13 year olds, who wanted to demonstrate how the support of friends and community members could help keep people from turning to crime. The following film, ‘Heaven Hugged Me’, explores some of the reasons that people in their community turn to crime, as well as the positive effect that community support can have on these individuals. This group of youngsters have delivered a powerful message through this film, as they have identified an issue that is so prevalent around them and are trying to offer their community a solution.

Bullying: Naniki’s Story

The final film that was produced during our time at Tshepo Hope was made by a group of 9 – 12 year olds. In this film they confront the seriousness of bullying, an issue which is faced by children worldwide. Watch the film below to see the children of Tshepo Hope’s representation of the severity of this issue, which they would like their community to address.

Mamello le Paballo

The second of the five videos made during our week at Tshepo Hope comes from the youngest team. This group of 6-7 year olds chose to tell a story about child neglect and alcoholism; issues which, sadly, are very common in townships and often go hand-in-hand. The title ‘Mamello le Paballo’ encompasses the positive change which this film hopes to encourage, as the rough translation from the Setswana idiom is’to be listened to and cared for’.



Keletso Moganedi

Themba Nkosi

Siphesihle Tilou

Thembeloni Situ

Nkazimulo Dlamini

Group Leaders:

Amanda Hinana

Busisine Khoza

Mailies Fleming

Crime Doesn’t Pay

We are excited to share the first of five films made at Tshepo Hope as part of the Changing the Story project. Crime Doesn’t Pay was made by a group of students aged 10-13 and is about the consequences of crime. This is a key issue the children felt needed to be addressed in their community. The song is well known in South Africa as something that prisoners sing when they miss their families, expressing regret for their actions.

We hope you’ll agree that these kids are incredibly talented!

Watch the film below.




Siyanda Serobe

Tsebo Renkintseng

Sphiwe Gumbi

Mveleli Mpongeoana

Karabo Sefatsa


Group Leaders:

Hanry Mogodi

Tonie Mokoena

Rebecca Macklin


Mpho (aged 12) has also been telling us more about herself.


“My name is Mpho. I am in grade 6. I love playing netball. When I grow up I want to be a nurse. My mother’s name is Sophie. I don’t have a father. I am 12 years old. I like to eat fruits and vegetables. But there’s something I don’t like to eat: pumpkin!”

Mpho (aged 12) and Zanele (aged 14)


“My name is Zanele. I am 14 years old. I attend school at Tsakane Secondary. I live with a family of 5 people: my mother; 2 sisters and2 uncles including me. I am in Grade 8.1. I like singing, debating and playing netball. My birthday is on the 3rd of April 2002. My favourite subjects at school are English, Creative Arts and Life Orientation. I don’t like eating too much food.”