World Children’s Day: Young author reveals how he survived bullying
South Africa / 21 November 2018, 6:59pm / Thembelihle Mkhonza
Lelo Kingston Mofokeng, 9, an author for the book "How I survived bullying" and his mother Leeyah Lerato Rakgaba at the World Children's Day celebration. Picture: Thembelihle Mkhonza/ANA
JOHANNESBURG - No matter how bad your day is, there is always something to be grateful for. You can be whatever you want to be...If you believe in yourself, a nine-year-old author said during World Children's Day celebration.
World Children’s Day is a global day of action ‘for children, by children’ to raise awareness and funds for the millions of children that are unschooled, unprotected and uprooted
Lelo Kingston Mofokeng is a published author for the book "How I survived bullying" which he wrote in grade 1 when he was only seven years old. He wrote and did the illustrations himself.
He was among the speakers who were talking during the celebration of World Children's Day on Tuesday night at Constitution Hill, Johannesburg that was organised by the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (Unicef).
Lelo’s mother Leeyah Lerato Rakgaba said that he started reading before the age of two and wrote his first book at the age of five.
“He enjoys reading, drawing animations, creative writing, drama/acting and movie making. At the age of three years he was featured on 3 Talk on SABC 3 for gifted people,” said Rakgaba.
“He writes and illustrates his own books and has currently written over 80 or more books waiting to be published and has drafted over 16 animation movie scripts. He dreams of working for an animation company one day like DreamWorks animations.”
Lelo is a motivational speaker, activist and is also an anti bullying ambassador. He has done talks at more than five township schools and also at his own school, the ridge school, King David Ariel school, Benero park primary school, Kempton park primary, University of Cape Town and Sunflower learning centre.
He recently won an award at the African authors awards and he has also been nominated for another award taking place in November. He has been nominated as an ambassador for an organisation called Brave heart which fights against bullying and another one called Kids2Kids.
Lelo said his mission was to see that all children get an education and that they learn to read and write. He started his own foundation called "Lelo Kingston Cares" when he was just seven-years-old. The foundation helps feed the homeless, donates goods to orphanages and helps schools promote reading and writing.
He said he was hoping to fight and do away with poverty in the world.
"I am hoping that this book can help other children who went through or are going through bullying and i also hopes that the bullies will read the book and see how much pain bullying causes and that they would stop bullying," said Lelo.
Lelo said he was appealing to companies or anyone who can buy 100 or more books to please come forward and buy the book so it can be given to the schools where children can’t afford to buy.
"We have identified more than 50 schools so far in need of these books but just don’t have the funds, so your help will be much appreciated. We can have you company or personal logo imprinted on the back of the book to show that you sponsored them," said Lelo.
During the Unicef Event the statue of a child was unveiled with a permanent home at this iconic space.
Constitution Hill Chief Executive Officer Dawn Robertson said: " Constitution Hill is delighted to provide a permanent home for Hope. The joyful statue of Hope for us is symbolic of the liberties that children enjoy today as a result of our progressive Constitution and the era of democracy so well defended by our Constitutional Court".
UNICEF had partnered with the Ster Kinekor, the SABC Foundation, Mango Airlines, Nedbank and Grey Advertising were demonstrating their support by packaging and live-screening the official Unicef ‘World Children’s Day’ video in cinemas, national TV channels, banks and on flights across the country and the region.
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