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UWE Bristol Zulu Choir Fundraises for Schools in South African Townships

South African Children’s Choir Embarks on UK Tour for Cultural Exchange

Project Zulu, an initiative led by the University of the West of England (UWE), has brought a children’s choir from South Africa to the UK for a three-week tour aimed at promoting cultural exchange. The choir, comprised of nine boys and eleven girls from the Madadeni Township in Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, will be staying with host families in Bristol during their visit. Their first performance in Bath was a resounding success, raising £1,600 in under an hour to support the construction of new classrooms in Madadeni Township schools.

The Mntimande Primary and Jobstown Primary schools, which the choir members attend, currently face the challenge of overcrowded classrooms, with more than 60 pupils per room. Ben Knight, the founder of Project Zulu and a senior lecturer at UWE, emphasized the significance of the tour’s success in advancing the educational development of these schools. In addition to showcasing their extraordinary musical talent, the choir members are eager to share their culture and music, aiming to foster mutual understanding and appreciation between South Africa and the UK.

Sinaye Phakathi, a choir member from Jobstown Primary School, expressed her joy in singing with the choir, finding comfort and hope through their performances. The choir’s repertoire includes the beloved song “Ngiyakuthanda Jesu” (I love you, Jesus). Ndomiso Zungu, a staff member at Mntimande Primary School, highlighted the choir’s enthusiasm for introducing Bristol to its cultural heritage, eager to showcase its unique singing and dancing traditions.

Through this cultural exchange, the Project Zulu choir hopes to create lasting connections, broaden perspectives, and raise awareness about the educational needs of South African township schools.

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