Abantu Book Festival 2017 appeal

Abantu Book Festival 2017 makes appeal, the people respond favourably

The second Abantu Book Festival started their fundraising for this year’s edition with a call to the readers. It has gone down a charm.

The Abantu Book Festival happened in Soweto, South Africa last December and received rave reviews for all who made it to the two venues of the Eyethu Lifestyle Centre and the Soweto Theatre. Panel sessions, movies, concerts, and book launches were interspersed with books for sale and general joyous blackness that would spontaneously break out in song and dance. It was an inspiring festival for writers, for readers, and Soweto residents and other Joburgers who turned up.

The festival is currently in preparation for the second edition of events which will be happening on December 7-10 at the same venues as last year. The one thing that everyone is familiar with in the business of festival organising is the money. This especially applies where it is a not-for-profit initiative, relying on donations and sponsorship for income. It takes an almighty effort to get the monies required to ensure that the events are memorable in the right way.

The folks at Abantu have started their journey for 2017 in a unique way; appealing to supporters for cold hard cash. Those who claim to support the events in Soweto now have an opportunity to put their money where their mouths are and donate to the events. Donations would ensure that it remains a people festival insulated from the vagaries of the bigger donors.

The plan is recruit up to 1000 new patrons, each donating R50 per month x 9 months (= R450), amounting to R450 000 in total. You would either give a once-off contribution of R450, or arrange a monthly Standing Order of R50 (March-December 2017). These funds are earmarked for production expenses, while the organisation source sponsorship proper.

Your donation comes with several, small benefits e.g. complimentary merchandise, social media shout-outs, listing in the festival catalogue and website. The people have taken to this appeal and already dozens of folks have signed up to be part of the group fuelling the reclamation of the South African literary scene from those who claim that we do not read. Here are some of the shout outs that have already been made out on the festival twitter handle.


If you feel that this movement is for you, I suggest that you email molweni@abantubookfestival.co.za for banking details. Use your full name as reference for easy tracking. You don’t have to be South African mind. After all, #WeAreOne #WeAreAbantu

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