Where generations meet 
and futures are created

Story telling is an age-old way of preserving history

Our Vision

The vision of Sinomlando is that people with forgotten, silenced and traumatized memories retrieve their history and develop resilience. The work that is done under both programs and serves to meet the vision of the organization, which is to enhance resilience in all who participate in them.  Sinomlando is a training organization and to date has worked with over 300 organizations. Sinomlando establishes partnerships with different types of organizations ranging from NPOs, CBOs, private, and public institutions.

As we stand on the brink of 2024, Sinomlando Centre for Oral History and Memory Work in Africa reflects on its journey thus far, acknowledging the support of funders, partners, and the community it serves. This milestone marks a pivotal point in Sinomlando’s evolution, highlighting its achievements, the strength of its partnerships, and it’s ambitious plans for the future.


Health & Well-Being

Through collaboration with local clinics, engagement with families, educators, and caregivers, we strive to create a supportive ecosystem that provides psycho-social support to youths living with HIV.

After-School Program

The After School program provides a non-judgmental space and a alternative environment with a structured framework which integrates social, emotional, and academic support.

Peer Mentors

Young people with leadership potential are taught life and leadership skills, how to work as a team, problem solving, events management, negotiation and report writing.



Often parents themselves have their own emotional baggage and benefit greatly from our psychosocial support. Without it, they may be unable to understand or support their children and grandchildren.

Our Impact at Sinomlando!

Since its inception, the After School Program has seen remarkable improvements in student attendance and academic performance. We've witnessed firsthand the transformative power of education and the critical role our program plays in shaping the futures of our youth. With your support, we can continue to empower more young lives, ensuring they have the tools and encouragement to excel.

Oral History

Oral History

  •  People and communities who make sense of their history are more likely to develop to their full potential.
  •  Telling one’s story in a caring and supportive environment helps to take control of one’s life.
  •  It is important to validate people’s perceptions and feelings, however painful or controversial they may be.
  •  Being able to talk to others about one’s history is empowering.
Sharing stories of past events

Memory Work

Memory Box

  • Memory Work is an adaptation of Oral History which includes narrative therapy, life histories, play and counseling skills.

  • Memory work training workshops for community workers (4 days), followed by an evaluation workshop (1 day).
  • Train the trainer course (3 months with combination of residential training and supervised fieldwork).
  • Facilitation of children’s, teenagers & care group sessions.

Edendale History Project

Book and Museum

Ultimately, the EHP will produce a book on the history of Edendale, establish a local museum and duplicate this model of documenting participatory community histories in other areas where history is in danger of being lost.

Using the medium of oral history, Sinomlando – in partnership with the School of Religion, Philosophy and Classics at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, the Department of Global Development Studies at Queens University in Canada, relevant South African government departments such as Art & Culture, local libraries and the municipality of Umgungundlovu – plans to preserve and document the history of the area from an Afrocentric point of view.

The Training Models

4-Day Training Workshops

Memory work training workshops equip the staff of partner organizations with memory work skills that are relevant to the context of the families and communities they work with. This training takes a minimum of four days and accommodates 15-20 participants per workshop.

Awareness workshops

These workshops usually last three hours to half a day aiming to raise awareness and provide insights into memory works processes in the absence as well as the presence of traumatic situations. Based on the interests of partners, plans are made for a full-length workshop.

Parent’s & Primary Caregiver Workshops

The effectiveness of memory work and psychosocial support for improving the emotional well-being of children also depends on the well being of their caregivers. The adults who look after children with psychosocial challenges are often experiencing similar challenges themselves and for this reason need emotional support. For this reason, Sinomlando recommends that care support groups be organized alongside children’s group sessions.

Beading, weaving and sewing

Children’s Groups & Camps

Children and youth also do memory work in group sessions and in camps. At the initiative of community organizations, children of the same age and with similar life experiences are brought together and introduced to memory work. The sessions are planned according to the availability of the children and youth.

The presence and the co-facilitation of the camps by the peer leaders brings a positive dynamic in the camps. When they hear from their peers, the youth open up and believe that they can also live positively.


“I would like to go far but this problem (drinking) is an impediment to my progress.”

Since then has applied at the University of South Africa to improve his professional life.

Testimony of a Tutor

Authentic - After School Program

“Even when you see others who have the same challenges as you, it always feels like my situation is worse than anyone else’s. today I go home encouraged, knowing that whatever life presents, with your support I will am safe. I will thrive."

Testimony of a Youth

Authentic - Memory Work

“If our schools could be like this camp we could all do well and pass”. “I was not afraid to ask questions from anyone, the tutors and other young people alike. No one thought I was dumb”. “I felt like everyone cared about each other’s success.”

Testimony of a Student

Authentic - After School Program

"The workshop was useful for me personally. I thought I had dealt with some of my issues but this workshop made me realised that I had always glossed over them. I needed a space to face them once again to understand where I am right now.”

Testimony of a Pimary CareGiver

Authentic - Primary Care WorkShop

"We receive a lot of support from the community. They motivate us to continue with our shows. They also encourage that we organise focus small group discussions and dialogue platforms in the community for teenagers to allow for reflections and learning.”

Testimony of a Young Reporter

Authentic - The Radio Project

"I was convinced when I saw the peer leaders because they are our age mates and they know the issues that are bugging us.”

Testimony of Youths

Authentic - Peer Mentors

Our Partners & Sponsors

Wealth of Knowledge

Our research began at the School of Religion and Theology, University of KwaSulu-Natl in 1994. Over the past two decades, numerous books and papers have been published, many written and co-written by Sinomlando Centre's Research Director, Prof Philippe Denis.