25 August 2011

As They Find a Way by Wizzy Mangoma & Teurai Chanakira (Book Excerpt)


These days everybody wants to be involved in the booming Entertainment, Arts and Media Industry, but very few know where to start or what is required to get the Industry's attention. This is particularly so amongst Africans in the Creative Arts Industry as a profession in the Arts has not historically been regarded as a viable route to make a living. There are countless visionaries and creative people who will never be seen or heard of due to the lack of exposure, a polished product, the correct image and lack of the knowledge on how to market themselves effectively.

Women have voices and stories to tell. Many women have been through continuous struggle for their voices to be heard. When most people around the globe think of women, and in particular, an African woman, one of the things that comes to mind is, someone who is submissive or someone who cannot deliver.

The voices of men have always overshadowed women’s voices in many aspects. Men have always told their stories while women stood by their side. Who else can tell their own stories of sweet music that can be sang with melodies from the depth of the heart none other than the African Women themselves? The world can hear those untold stories through all forms of creativity such as Fashion, Styling, Art, Literature, Music, Dance, Theater, Painting, Film, Photography, Craft, Culinary arts and much more.

A lot of creative women are emerging as they realize the significance of their dreams. The women you are about to read about will take you on a journey of their lives.

As we create, we build a home of comfort for our soul. A home which can be understood by many, only if we give them the chance to walk in our world.

“Choose to align yourself with people who are like-minded in their search for inspiration. Your life is simplified enormously when you don’t have to defend yourself to anyone, and when you receive support rather than criticism.” ~ Dr. Wayne Dye

Before you criticize someone’s work, stop and think, remember that whatever you are criticising was done from the heart.

Interview excerpt

Name: Gloria Rumbidzai Ndoro-Mkombachoto

Quote of your choice: “There can be only one success, one accomplishment, one fulfillment & one source of peace, joy & happiness - and that is to spend your life, your very own CHOSEN way, regardless of what others think of it. If you aren't living life your CHOSEN way right now, then, it might just turn out to be a wasted & failed life.” Gloria Rumbidzai Ndoro-Mkombachoto

Bio: Gloria Ndoro is the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Consultant of Global Business Assignments Incorporated, a Management Consulting firm she started in 1991 with a single focus: to assist CEOs and their top management teams develop their organizations in order that they deliver their business and organizational strategies.

Previously, Gloria lectured in Financial and Management Accounting for Business and International Marketing to undergraduates and MBA students respectively at the University of Zimbabwe; Finance and Management to Honours students and Post-Graduate Students respectively at the University of Cape Town; Strategy and Entrepreneurship to MBA, Management Advancement Programme and Masters In Management to students at the University of Witwatersrand, Graduate School of Business (WBS) and in the Management and Executive Development Programmes of both WBS and University of Stellenbosch, Graduate School of Business.

Gloria has been consulting since 1988 when she came back to Africa from Canada where she had graduated in the MBA Programme at the University of Ottawa. The MBA was embarked on after finishing a Bachelor of Commerce Degree at the University of Swaziland in 1984. Gloria is currently completing her Doctorate in Informatics and Design at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology.

She has consulted widely for the private sector, public sector and the international community, such as IFC/WORLD BANK, AMSCO, USAID, UNDP, UNIFEM, UNIDO, NORAD, Royal Danish Embassy, ESAMI in Southern and Eastern Africa and Afghanistan. In the private & public sectors, she has consulted, created & reviewed strategies for several organizations including but not restricted to the following: Seed Co, the African Seed Company, Standard Bank of SA, Zimbabwe Open University, Omega Transport and Security, Delta Corporation, Global Foreign Exchange, SA National Productivity Institute etc.

Gloria is also a Decorative Artist and is the sole design capability behind all the wrought iron creations (ornamental furniture, decorative artworks and collectibles) at Totem Shumba Metal Studio @ Totem Shumba Estate, a business she started in 2009. The business started off as a hobby where she wanted to explore her creative abilities and is fast growing into a business with export markets. Gloria also has business interests in the property and food sectors in Southern Africa. She lives in both Zimbabwe and South Africa, the region where her business interests are concentrated.

How were you as a child - was there anything outstanding about your personality?

Determined and undeterred - are the two words that sum up who I was growing up. I grew up with a sense of focus and with an attitude that nothing was insurmountable if you put your mind to it. To a certain extent, that made me become a control freak. If I wanted something badly, I got it. Failure was never an option for me. I have recently started realizing that it is okay to let go and it is a complete and well lived life if you do not get to have everything you want. Happiness, peace, tranquility, good health and most importantly, doing what you want when you want to, have become cherished priorities.

Do you remember when you first realized your talent?

When did I first realize my talent you ask? Which particular talent? I consider myself multi-talented. If academics is an art form, I realized at junior school that participating in class allowed me to internalize concepts. In high school I realized that I needed to study in order to score exceptional grades and at University, I realized that I had to attend all lectures in order to sail through because it was in class that the lecturer emphasized sections that one should know in order to pass that subject.

The art arena was somewhat tricky for me. I realized in high school that I was artistically inclined but never uttered a word to my parents because art was not encouraged in my family. My father always announced to us that most artists were poor people and he was never going to allow any of his children to choose a poor life for as long as he was alive. A young brother of mine, the fourth in the family, lived, dreamt, and did art day in and day out. He suffered the brunt of the criticism from my father and as a result became reclusive in his room. He would lock himself up and not speak to anyone whilst sketching artworks in his room. When I saw this, I decided that I would never ever confide in anyone that in fact I had desires of my own that I wanted to pursue. I therefore became the exemplary first born, good girl and settled for academics. I decided at a young age that if most artists were indeed poor, I would first succeed at academics and then, with a bag of cash in hand, I would then have the latitude and “luxury” to pursue my area of art.

Who/what was your inspiration?

My mother was an artistic person in the way she cooked, laid out her food, decorated her home, the antique pieces she bought and the way she arranged them in the house. Not only that, for a woman who was a qualified nursing sister, she did amazing embroidery (cross stitch mainly), crocheted and knitted all our winter jerseys for many years and sold many more, in addition to sewing most of our clothes. At one time she was working full-time and supplying Barbours with her sewn wares. Although now a retired nurse, she is still a fantastic cook, still knits, sews and crochets. I was very keen and excelled in hardanger embroidery at high school.

Was there anyone who noticed your special talent, did you get any moral support?

My mother and Domestic Science teacher noticed my artistic talents and nurtured them.

How did people react to you when they noticed you were different- were you understood?

I grew up in a family where we were told everyday that the sky was the limit. Yet, outside the security and confines of that family was the real world that filtered what a girl child could and could not do. I realized when I was at high school that there were different expectations by the society from a girl child, which were different from that of a boy child. To a large extent, I believe I was traumatized somewhat, but I carried on to this day. Not being understood has never bothered me. I am not a needy person who thrives on acceptance and validation from other people because I believe alone, I am complete.

As They Find a Way is an excerpt from a book compiled and edited by Wizzy Mangoma & Teurai Chanakira.
(Xlibris, Aug, 2011)

Copyright © Wizzy Mangoma & Teurai Chanakira 2011.

Wizzy Mangoma is a writer, spoken word artist, dancer/choreographer, motivational speaker, beauty pageant presenter/judge, theater director, designer, event coordinator, and PR Coordinator.

Wizzy lived in Denmark for seventeen years where she participated, on TV series, magazines and worked as a Graphic designer and PR coordinator for an advertisement bureau. Besides working with African Ballet of Denmark and other well-known artists, she established her own theater and dance company in Copenhagen. And, spent most of the time traveling around Europe performing as well as hosting ethnic fashion shows with her designs.

A winner of Editor’s Choice Award 2007 and a published poet in books like Twilight Musings and Songs of Honor, Wizzy writes children stories, which she reads in schools and festivals. She has published a children's book Manjanja: The Shining Red Fruit, and a poetry book Moment Treasures.

She has worked as a Chairperson and Marketing Director with different charity organizations where she organized and hosted events to raise funds. Wizzy also designs accessories and greeting cards (African inspirations).

Teurai Chanakira is a law graduate, model, blogger, fashion Editor for the AfriQan Times Australia, fashion blogger for Afrimarque Events Australia, and Fashion Columnist for Air Zimbabwe’s in-flight magazine, Skyhost”.

As a Model, she has accomplished many titles, including being September 2009 Winner in Beautiful People Magazine; in the Top 100 of Naomi Campbell's Global Model Search in 2010, including having modeled for and been featured in numerous Zimbabwean and international magazines. She is also the Founder of the Elizabeth Chanakira Cancer Trust in Harare, Zimbabwe.


Myne Whitman said...

This is a commendable endeavor, wish them the best.

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