Magnet Theatre is a 32-year-old arts organisation with a range of youth development projects that are aimed at transforming the lives of marginalised township youth. Our flagship project, the two-year Fulltime Training and Job Creation Programme, is the only ‘trade school’ for theatre in the Western Cape, providing a suite of bridging programmes in theatre arts for unemployed youth.

G7: Okwe-Bokhwe (like or of a goat) directed by Mandla Mbothwe. Picture: Mark Wessels

Magnet Theatre has created the Give20Plenty Campaign for the long-term investment in the 21 youth on the sixth cohort of the Fulltime Training and Job Creation Programme (2020/2021). This bursary campaign is meant to ensure that we continue operating with our programmes until the end of the current cycle of training (2021).  Despite the very tangible successes of the training programme which sees on a three-year average, 94 % of our graduates in tertiary education and employment, the funding climate is challenging and finding sponsorship is becoming increasingly difficult. We are looking for people to partner with us in supporting bursary costs for the students.

Magnet Theatre’s Response to Covid19

In March, at the beginning of the Covid 19 crisis in South Africa and the implementation of the lockdown, Magnet Theatre took a decision not to suspend its operations, and to roll out its programmes as successfully as possible through online and remote learning possibilities. This decision was taken as a result of considering the harsh effect it would have on the beneficiaries to suddenly withdraw communication, support, stipends and training at the same time as a devastating lockdown. The theatre redesigned and rearranged the curriculum for the new sixth cohort of trainees, adapting all the training to an online format, working mostly through WhatsApp and Google Drive (see video below).

Until Magnet can come back to face-to-face teaching at their premises in Observatory,  the theatre needs support to provide participants with data, extra hours for teachers on the online platforms/ devices for equal access to information as well as food packages for the least resourced trainees and alumni.

The Magnet Emergency C-19 Fund Campaign is designed to address the unforeseen costs that has arisen as the result of this pandemic.  Magnet Theatre needs to keep training and nurturing a generation of young leaders in the creative industries who will be ready when when social distancing is over.

How you can help:

Give20Plenty Campaign:

The Magnet Emergency C-19 Fund Campaign:

Magnet YouTube channel on how students and staff are operating in the lockdown: