Friday, 20 July 2012

Farm untold stories needed

By: Zongezile Matshoba
Dumisani Budaza, one of the four interns of the Busy Bees Project, joined Albany Museum’s celebrations of the Mandela Day. The Busy Bees team used its 67 minutes, encouraging parents and learners in four farms, Wilson's Party, Martindale, Zintle and Manley Flats, to speak out and tell their histories.

“I am also from around this area,” said Budaza. His family too had to move on because of certain circumstances in farms, including seeking better life.

Budaza said that these grade R to 7 learners will need to learn in the future about what happened to their parents and grandparents.

“Grahamstown East history is not written,” so is that of most farm workers. “Let us write our own history . . . our rich culture is on our hands,” further said Budaza, to the nod of many that were listening interestingly.

The Busy Bees Project was initiated by Albany Museum, with the financial support from the Makana Municipality. It is part of the Project 200 years.

MAKING A POINT: Dumisani Budaza, from the Busy Bees Project,
inviting farm children and parents to tell their stories
so that they could also be recorded.  
“Project 200 Years is about reconciliation … about unifying untold history and the written history,” Budaza allayed any fears.

The Busy Bees have a mammoth task of unearthing untold histories. The future of these children lies in knowing where farm workers come from, and where they are now.

"This is very important to have proper history, told by the farmers themselves, and written by people that you know and trust".

Budaza and his team are much interested in it, or in helping the farm workers to record their own history.

The other members of the Busy Bees team are Sinethemba Yame, Jongikhaya Mene and Elron Kleinhans.

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