Eastern Cape author has a knack for developing children's talents
Published author, radio presenter and founder of World of Art Movement, Cinga Dyala, wants children to develop their artistic skills from a young age.
Dyala, 33, is a presenter for a community radio station, Kumkani FM. She interviews artistic children and invites them to read short stories and review them on air.
“As a child born and bred in Ndevana location (near Qonce), I discovered my writing skills at a very young age and my passion for words was quite developed as early as 14 years of age,” Dyala said.
“Throughout my high school life, I tried to figure out what career path I would follow, and that frustrated me a lot because none of the things that came to mind were in line with my passion.”
The wordsmith spent many years searching for what she really wanted to do. It took her years to discover herself as an artist and unlock her full potential.
“I made a vow to myself that I would make sure children never go through the same struggle. I want artistic children to discover themselves from an early age, in order for them to be able to start living. Children need to unlock their talent and embrace it as early as possible.”
She said introducing art to children at an early age would also teach society that art was not just a hobby; it was a sustainable career.
“Children need to know that, so that they can invest energies in polishing their skills. That way, we can achieve a generation of artists who know and understand their strengths and who are fearless in chasing their dreams. The more you invest in your talent, the better at it you become,” she said.
“I have noticed many children are illiterate; we have taken it upon ourselves to partner with Nal’ibali, A Book for Every Child Foundation, Mdantsane Community Library, Bantu Child Books and Kumkanii FM in achieving the goal of promoting the culture of reading in children. Apart from promoting talent, we are also passionate about seeing t that children read and equip their minds with words.”
The artistic young woman won the Business and Arts SA top achiever for 2019, was a provincial ambassador for the Business and Arts SA debut programme for 2020-2021 and was recently selected as one of the 200 Young South Africans for 2021 by the Mail & Guardian.
In 2018 Dyala launched an arts festival for children, Inkcubeko Yomntwana Arts Festival, which was a platform for children to gather in one space and embrace their talents, changing the narrative that artistic children were not smart.
“We hosted the festival again in 2019, which led to running a drama society called Iingcambu Zempumelelo Creative Arts. We have members from various high schools in Mdantsane who meet at Mdantsane Arts Centre for rehearsals.
We partnered with the Department of Education to work with primary schools around Mdantsane, introducing art in its purest form by working with the creative arts teachers. In 2019, we launched lingcambu Zempumelelo Talent Show, and last year in February we celebrated the World Read Aloud Day with A Book for Every Child Foundation and Mdantsane Community Library.
This year World of Art Movement partnered with three special schools, giving the pupils a platform to showcase their skills, regardless of their physical and mental disabilities.
“We are excited about this partnership because children living with physical or mental challenges will be embraced for their beautiful talents, as art knows no physical or mental challenge — and it will also educate society that children living with physical and mental challenges also deserve equal love and respect,” she said.
Nominator Xolisani Tayo said Dyala’s passion for child development had made a different in people’s lives, as many children had gained confidence.
“Her passion has stretched to the World of Art Movement as well, as the company is running a child development programme with two annual children’s events,” he said.
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