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Review

Historically, we have had a close relationship with the Afrikaner community and this is still the case. Afrikaans is one of South Africa’s important official languages – it is the language that is close to the heart of millions of South Africans. The reality is, however, that Afrikaans as a high-function language is under threat for several reasons, and although, realistically seen, Afrikaans cannot be done away with by any discussions or persuasion, it is nevertheless essential to use every opportunity to conduct discussions and to form alliances with a view to promoting the preservation of Afrikaans and to preventing the gloss of this language pearl from fading.

To protect Afrikaans it is important to protect the speakers of Afrikaans. For this reason we have launched several projects where speakers of Afrikaans can get involved actively to strengthen and support Afrikaans.

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The unique Afrikaans media house, Maroela Media is known for their comprehensive, free content that not only informs readers of the latest news, but also entertains them with a hint of nostalgia, and makes them part of a digital Afrikaans community. Maroela Media’s success lies in their love for Afrikaans. According to Susan Lombaard, Maroela Media's Chief Executive and editor, it is no coincidence that Afrikaans is the language in which they provide in your daily spiritual, entertainment and news content needs, but that it is the language that has given Maroela Media its existence. “We cherish and promote Afrikaans because the language is so close to our hearts,” said Susan. The team at Maroela Media promotes Afrikaans in various creative and original ways and even though their main focus is providing the news and content in pure Afrikaans, they offer more than just reading material to their readers. Their radio production house, Draadloos, currently manufactures and supplies radio productions to 56 Afrikaans community radio stations country wide, which includes stations who has Afrikaans as broadcasting language. Maroela Media’s radio seminar is a huge project that is presented every year for two days in Centurion and Cape Town. It is a free event where experts from the radio industry gives training to stations that are wide spread and unable to attend training opportunities. Apart from good training the seminars also offer a very good networking opportunity that contributes to good cooperation and support between the stations. Every project that Maroela Media tackles isn’t only tackled with enthusiasm but they also make sure that every project has a strong Afrikaans connection. “Each project must be in favour of Afrikaans or the Afrikaans community and be related to our core business, namely content, whether its digital or for radio stations,” explains Susan. The outdoor cinema project which takes place yearly at Pretoria’s National Botanical Garden is also a very exciting project promoting Afrikaans. Here, Maroela Media succeeds in bringing the Afrikaans community physically together to visit and watch the latest Afrikaans movies on a huge screen. The Wikipedia project is another project that is to Maroela Media’s heart since it is a very important project. Wikipedia is timeless and documents information for ever. Therefore, Maroela Media aims to grow the volume of articles published in Afrikaans on Wikipedia, so that Afrikaans documents and information can be retained in history. The project shows immense growth since its existence in 2016. Maroela Media started the project with 37 000 articles on Wikipedia and currently stands at 46 000 Afrikaans articles. “By tackling initiatives and projects in Afrikaans we contribute to the growth of Afrikaans as well as emphasizing to the Afrikaans community that Afrikaans is busy to grow. There are exciting and dynamic things happening in Afrikaans, and it makes people feel that they can still function in Afrikaans,” Susan added with excitement.    
Kraal Uitgewers is a small but specialised publishing company focusing mainly on publishing quality books on South African and Afrikaans history. It also publishes publications that could change history or set it right, or take a strong stand with regard to political and social issues in South Africa, among other things. Kraal Uitgewers mainly publishes non-fiction. The establishment of Kraal Uitgewers Kraal Uitgewers was established in 1999, shortly after South Africa commemorated the centennial anniversary of the outbreak of the Anglo Boer War. The love and passion for the history of the Anglo Boer War of Paul Alberts, one of South Africa’s most well-known photo journalists, and Col Frik Jacobs, former Director of the War Museum in Bloemfontein, eventually led to the establishment of this unique publishing house. Kraal Uitgewers today Kraal Uitgewers has been part of the Solidarity Movement since 2010. The integration of Kraal Publishers as part of the Movement plays an important role since Kraal as a publishing house provides a powerful tool for the development of new ideas in the community. Kraal Uitgewers is still fulfilling its function as a publisher of historical Africana publications within the Solidarity Movement but it is also focusing strongly on contemporary publications that could make a valuable contribution to prominent debates within the Afrikaner community.  Prestigious award for language expert A notable example of the value of a publisher such as Kraal was the awarding of the Jan H. Marais prize to an author of a Kraal publication. The South African Academy for Science and Art announced in March that the prestigious Jan H. Marais Prize would be awarded this year to language historian Prof. Jaap Steyn and theologian Prof Jan van der Watt. This prize is awarded annually to candidates for their outstanding contribution to Afrikaans as a scientific language. The Jan H. Marais Prize was officially presented to Steyn and Van der Watt at an event in Stellenbosch on 30 May. One of Steyn’s most prominent works, ‘Ons gaan ’n taal maak’: Afrikaans sedert die Patriot-jare, was published by Kraal Uitgewers in 2014 and received wide acclaim from prominent language experts as an “impressive” and “monumental work of major importance”. Steyn also contributed to the publisher’s latest book edited by the risk analyst and expert on Africa security, Dr Heinrich Matthee, titled Kultuurvryheid en selfbestuur: Keuses van klein groepe wêreldwyd. In addition, ‘Ons gaan ’n taal maak’ is going to be translated into English soon. According to Kraal Uitgewers’ CEO Alana Bailey, the decision was taken recently so that the book may be introduced to an international audience as well, and so that Prof. Steyn’s exceptional contribution to the expansion of Afrikaans as a language of science could be made known to an even wider audience. “The English version of this book will be able to give a non-Afrikaans audience a deeper understanding of the complexity and extent of the history of this African language, and hopefully provide readers with a new perspective on the origin, development and survival of this young language,” Bailey explained.  Browse  For these and other Kraal publications and products, please visit www.kraaluitgewers.co.za. The publisher’s new online store makes your Kraal shopping convenient and safe. You are welcome to do some browsing! You may also contact Kraal on 012 644 4329.  
Akademia who is in its sixth academic year stands for the idea of Afrikaans universities: that the Afrikaans student has an opportunity to receive first class higher education and training to be able to contribute to the world, as well as their community. According to Piet le Roux, Academic Head of Akademia, the scaling down and abolition of Afrikaans at public universities means that Afrikaans is now back in the hands of the community. Afrikaans higher education has a bright future because of the Afrikaans communities need to retain Afrikaans education and training. Le Roux’s view is amidst decisions made by various historic Afrikaans universities’ counsels that Afrikaans should be significantly narrowed or be effectively abolished. He also said that these universities historically stood for the idea of Afrikaans universities but that they are now turning their backs on this idea. “Yet, these universities were always just the embodiment of the idea and not the idea itself. What happens to Afrikaans at public universities is therefore not determinative. The future lies in private community universities.” Le Roux says the current Afrikaans character in universities is the product of private community initiatives of 100 to 150 years ago. Nothing is stopping Akademia from establishing highly successful Afrikaans universities again. At Akademia they accept this challenge with the support of the Afrikaans community. “We welcome contributions and we will in turn also help other initiatives with the same objective,” said Le Roux. Akademia offers various fully accredited qualifications with the use of a high technology education model that brings lecturers and students together in study centres across the country in virtual study spaces. With the establishment of Akademia the Department of Higher Education and Training awarded Akademia with conditional registration as higher education institution. After a comprehensive quality control process the institution received a notice on 30 May 2017 that complete registration as higher education institution was awarded to them. With the building of Akademia more Afrikaans speaking students can be educated in their mother tongue by an institution that makes use of the latest technology to ensure the best quality of higher education. Akademia is a private institution who fights fearlessly for Afrikaans. Join Solidarity and SMS the word LETSBUILD to 34802 (R1/SMS) or let us know where you would like to build at https://solidariteit.co.za/bousaam/#meningspeiling
Afrikaans is the language that brought us ‘Liefling’ and ‘Stuur Groete aan Mannetjies Roux’, the language used by poets such as Ingrid Jonker and Totius to express their deepest emotions, the language for which heroes such as Jopie Fourie died and for which authors such as Dalene Matthee lived. It is the language of business tycoons such as Johann Rupert and Christo Wiese. This is the language AfriForum is seeking to protect, promote and nurture with initiatives such as AfriSpel, Wêreldwyd and Afrikaans-Vriendelik. Projects such as the Dink of Sink debating competition, AfriSpel and SLIM (Study and Learn In your Mother tongue) are targeting the youth in particular. Dink of Sink is an unprepared debating competition for high-school learners. The competition is aimed at promoting Afrikaans and equipping Afrikaans pupils with debating skills. The SLIM campaign was launched to point out to students, prospective students and their parents exactly how important mother-tongue education is for one’s professional life. AfriSpel creates educational games that promote Afrikaans and being an Afrikaner by practising how to spell difficult words, among other things. Wêreldwyd is an Afrikaans cyber chat room that enables South Africans across the world to get together. Wêreldwyd also aims to ensure that South Africans outside our borders can keep abreast of important news and other matters of interest to them. AfriForum also promotes Afrikaans in the world of business by means of Afrikaans-Vriendelik and AfriFoon. Afrikaans-Vriendelik offers a platform where Afrikaans businesses and consumers can meet. The annual Tinteltong awards are also presented by Afrikaans-Vriendelik. These awards focus on businesses that promote Afrikaans through their products, services and marketing. AfriFoon is committed to establishing and promoting Afrikaans in the field of telecommunications by offering all marketing, correspondence, contracts, sales actions and service delivery in Afrikaans only. ForumFilms is a production house with exciting plans for the future. The documentary Tainted Heroes is one of their major success stories so far and they are envisaging a variety of documentaries and other Afrikaans productions for the future. Help us to continue developing similar initiatives to promote Afrikaans by SMSing BOU to 34802.
The Federasie van Afrikaanse Kultuurverenigings (FAK) (Federation of Afrikaans Cultural Societies) is the oldest umbrella organisation and a leader of cultural societies. The FAK not only is a co-ordinator of cultural societies, but it also nurtures cohesion in the national Afrikaans community – and Afrikaans is the language in which the FAK makes a stand. Today the FAK still is the foremost organisation to enable you to be creative in Afrikaans, although it was established way back in 1929. It is a future-oriented cultural organisation offering a home for the Afrikaans language and culture and positively promoting our proud Afrikaner history. This year, the FAK offers an exciting tour to Europe and Egypt. The tour is aimed mainly at Grade 11 and 12 learners, students as well as young working men and women, but without being limited to a particular group. Included in the tour are the Netherlands, Belgium, France and a night in Egypt. The duration of the tour is 13 days and 10 nights, from 28 September to 8 October 2017. The main aim of the tour is to discover the deep roots of Afrikaans and also to get exposure to Europe’s history that still has an impact on South Africa even today. Excursions include a visit to the home of Jan van Riebeeck. The FAk also promotes Afrikaans by means of exciting poster series, poetry competitions and workshops, among other things. The International Afrikaans Expo is an exciting writing competition focusing on creative use of Afrikaans by learners and students in particular. Taking part is great fun, and in addition learners are also assisted with their writing by receiving feedback from the judges. The Expo this year is offered in a new format to accommodate modern technology and to make participation in the Expo more accessible. The NP van Wyk Louw Centre for Community Studies is a future-oriented idea centre focusing on the conditions for successful and self-reliant communities. The centre was established in 2013 from the FAK and still shares offices with this cultural organisation situated on the grounds of the historic Voortrekker Monument. Regular features are conferences, publications and research reports as well as opinion pieces that appear on a weekly basis in Standpunte as well as other media. At the foot of the Voortrekker Monument lies the Afrikaanse Liedjietuin (Garden of Songs) among lush trees and beautiful scenery. Stroll hand in hand through the spectacular roses and enjoy the murmuring of a small brook. Join in humming or singing the lyrics of popular Afrikaans hits captured in granite slabs across the Afrikaanse Liedjietuin and allow yourself to be carried away nostalgically to your own childhood days of being young and free.

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