I was lazily scrolling through my Instagram feed the other day when something my good and longtime friend Nomusa Ndebele posted caught my eye: her and her partner Carol had just published their first bilingual Ndebele/Shona story book to help children engage in learning Ndebele and Shona.
Gorgeously illustrated and beautifully written in both Shona and Ndebele, I told myself, “I need to tell EVERYONE!”
Why am I so excited about this book?
This could be what many young Zimbabwean parents have been clamoring for, especially those in the diaspora who struggle to pass down and preserve our languages and heritage to their children.
In addition to passing down our languages and culture, it creates a new tool for learning, provides a unique and beautiful way of bonding, and more importantly, inspires a greater sense of identity and pride within our children.
About the book itself!
The book is called, Thoko vuka! Thoko muka!, 2 books (Ndebele and Shona) in 1 bilingual hard cover children’s book. It is written by Nomusa Ndebele, illustrated by Walt Barna and translated by by J. Gutuza.
Based on the popular Ndebele nursery rhyme, Thoko, Thoko Vuka! written by Joanna Sibanda (nee Moyo), they created this series to allow children to learn about Zimbabwean culture in a fun, engaging and relatable way. This is done through the lens of Thoko and Zou-Zou, two characters that go on fun and amazing adventures to learn about our culture and heritage.
How you can order your beautiful family’s copy
You can pre-order now for delivery (Australia, Belgium, Canada, the U.K. and U.S.) by Zimbabwe Independence Day 2019. More countries will be added based on demand.
In my excitement, I even requested that they create a promo code: KWAPI10. Enter it at check out for 10% off your purchase. Offer expires March 17th.
You can learn more about the book, its creators and how to order at saanrize.com
Why I think you should get a copy
I think everything you’ve read up until this point makes a great case as to why you should get a copy of this book. I strongly believe it should be on the bookshelf in every Zimbabwean household with toddlers and young ones running around, especially those in the diaspora.
For those of us in the diaspora–and many of us left home for very good reasons–we are raising our children far away from a big part of who they are. Because of this, we are obligated to help them navigate through the duality of their identity, and this book is just another tool in the toolbox to help us do this.
Sincerely, Kwapi Vengesayi
Kwapi Vengesayi is an Amazon four-time bestselling author and all his books are Available on Amazon.