Miselwa (20) from Khayelitsha, Cape Town found her love for story telling while studying drama in high school. After matriculating from Cedar High School of the Arts in 2014, she set her heart on AFDA to pursue her acting dreams.
Miselwa was raised by her dad and her aunt in the township after her mother abandoned her and her sister 7 years ago.
Miselwa’s father, Vincent was fortunately able to pay for her first two years of studies with the money he had saved up for years, but by Miselwa’s third year he was only able to cover the enrolment fee on his pensioners salary.
Unable to come up with fees with only 4 months left to finish her studies, Miselwa was subsequently suspended from class. Knowing she wouldn’t have able to afford the outstanding R45 000, Miselwa had no means in sight to finish her degree.
Luntu Masiza (26) and Vitjitua Kandetu (23), Miselwa’s close friends and fellow ‘Live Performance Acting’ classmates at AFDA, took matters into their own hands. They didn’t want to see their friend’s talents go to waste and for her to lose her passion for the arts. They believe she has the ability to inspire others with her gift and her personality.
“Miselwa is a great human being to be around. She`s a very humbled soul , loving , understanding and talented individual. Miselwa is also striving to improve herself and be better vision of herself which is inspiring.” – says Luntu.
“It was very painful for me to see her suspended from school due to her fees and not being allowed to fulfil her dream to be the first in her family with a degree. I myself have been in her position before and it was a very painful experience which I hate to see anyone else going through it. I couldn’t seat back and watch her go through that pain and that experience” says Luntu.
“When the school excluded Miselwa because she could not pay up fees, I cried. It broke my heart to see my friend not being able to complete her studies because of fees. I remember telling her ‘Don’t worry, Missy we will make a way. I couldn’t watch it happen. I promised her I had her back’” – says Vitjitua.
Luntu discovered BackaBuddy when he was looking for fundraising to complete his own studies in 2016 and thought crowdfunding might be a good option to get Miselwa back to school.
Miselwa, Luntu and Vitjitua took it upon themselves to get the word out about the BackaBuddy campaign. They made contact with friends and family and attempted getting corporate sponsorships. With donations from Miselwa’s lecturers, classmates and friends R17 317.50 was raised on BackaBuddy towards the outstanding school fees of R45 000. A final anonymous offline donation of R30 000 was enough to get Miselwa back in the student seat.
Inspired by a successful campaign and the overwhelming support from her friends, Miselwa is grateful to be back at school and is already making plans for the future. She hopes to expand society’s lens, portraying strong woman roles and playing dynamic LGBT characters.
“I aspire to work in the entertainment industry as an actress, rapper and writer and will do my best at giving back to black communities since art has always been looked down upon. I would love to change the mentality that you have to be an office in order to be successful.” Says Miselwa.
Miselwa is currently back at AFDA catching up on her third term assignments she missed during her 5 week suspension. She is also acting in graduation films and preparing for her one hander stage production. All of this will be performed and screened for the end of Novemeber 2017.
Link to Miselwa’s BackaBuddy campaign: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/champion/project/save-miselwa-studies-campaign
To start your own crowdfunding campaign on BackaBuddy go to: https://www.backabuddy.co.za/individual/register
or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Article by: Zane Groenewald – BackaBuddy – Marketing Officer