Honouring her son’s legacy by helping others

2020-02-05 06:01
PHOTO: suppliedAuthor Thembeni Mtshali with her new book.

PHOTO: suppliedAuthor Thembeni Mtshali with her new book.

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IN an attempt to try and motivate young boys, a Henley dam mother has written a book based on the life of her son.

Thembeni Mtshali (52) said the book, titled Giant in a Boy’s Body, talks about her late son, Siya­bonga, who passed away in 2018.

She said her son died at the age of 20 but that he had managed to live a clean life and made a change in her family and community in that time despite the fact that he grew up without a father.

She told Echo that the death of her son encouraged her to write this book for others.

“The aim of this book is to motivate young boys to do right and become good men in society and in their families despite their age.

“Being a man has nothing to do with your age, as long as your actions are those of a man then you are one,” she said.

Mtshali said that after her son’s death she was encouraged to write the book and share the life that her son lived with the hope that it will encourage others.

“I want to show them that no matter what kind of a family you come from, you can do anything that you want in life and live a clean life. Most young boys complain about not having a father figure at home, this book will make them realise that actually you can become a good man even though your father is not present in your life.

“Siya­bonga started being the man at home at the age of 10. He did everything he had to do.

“At the age of 18 he decided to get married. He told me that he wanted to have a woman in his life, however he said he wanted to do it in the right way, by getting someone that he wanted to marry, and he did.

“He had done so much at such a young age,” she said.

Mtshali revealed that it was not easy writing this book as some of the chapters were very emotional for her.

“I would start crying and stop writing that chapter for the day, but I would continue the next day. Most of the chapters reminded me of all the good things that my son did when he was still alive.”

Mtshali recently opened a private school at Henley Dam which is named after her son. She said she did this to keep her son’s memory alive.

“It was Siyabonga’s dream to open this school. He even bought a site but unfortunately he died before he could build a school.

“The school was his dream, he used to talk about it everyday,” said an emotional Mtshali.


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