Publishing is one of the most sidelined activities in Namibia. If young Namibian writers actually had a real shot at becoming young authors, book shelves would be filled with so many Namibian stories. Tuhafeni George DaSilva Hishitelwa is a 26 year old author of the book titled ‘The Story of Hope’. Growing up in Onhuno, a small village in the Ohangwena region, George narrates that his love for writing started from a young age when he started writing a lot of poems and creative writing.
The Story of Hope
The book is inspired by the difficulties he had gone through throughout his entire upbringing. “Growing up at a poor village I did not have privileges. Things were not so easy and so I struggled a lot,” he says.
The man who only met his father at the age of 24 says that he did not have anyone to provide for him when he was in high school and things got even worse when he moved to the city to pursue his studies. “My grandmother had passed on that time and it even got to a point where I had to be homeless for about a month,” he recalls.
The Story of Hope is a memoir of George’s life telling his story from the very beginning narrating how he dealt with the trials and tribulations he encountered in life. “I tell my story of how I came about from humble beginnings to where I am now and throughout the book I gave motivation to the next person who might be finding themselves in the situation that I was. I felt neglected and I was in abject poverty because I didn’t have anyone to care for me,” says the author.
George says his purpose with this book was to inspire and motivate those who are hopeless sinces he had also gone through hopeless situations especially during his times in the capital city. “It is the circumstances that I have gone through that led me to writing a book that will inspire the next person.”
The book talks to the average person on the street, the person eating from the garbage bin and it reminds the CEO sitting in a corporate office that the reason they are where they are is because they have successfully triumphed and conquered barriers or circumstances. It further exhorts them not to sit back and relax for they still have a long way to go. “For those who find themselves in situations and think that they are neglected or that they are suffering they should compare their stories to mine,” says the young author.
George says that there are a lot of ‘crybabies’ in the country who take all the privileges for granted. They get all that they want but people like him never had any privilege which is what inspires him to believe that as a generation, young people need to stand up and fight for whatever they believe in; especially education wise. There are chapters that are specifically dedicated to the youth encouraging them to come off the streets and stop indulging in alcohol and drug abuse because they have a life to live and a future ahead of them.
How it all started…
As a motivational speaker, George describes the response from his listeners as impressive and overwhelming. “Whenever I told my story people would get inspired and they asked me to narrate it in a book. It was then in 2013 when I thought of giving it a try and it took me about, roughly, two years to complete my book. It wasn’t an easy task,” exclaimed the young author.
The wordsmith says that publishing his book has been his biggest accomplishment in life. “It has always been a dream to write a book one day and ever since December when my book was published, this is the greatest thing that has ever happened to me,” he exclaimed.
George is inspired by a lot of hardworking people, people who encourage and support him. These are people who look beyond tomorrow and not just today and think for themselves. To complete his book, George says that he worked with a couple of people who have inspired him. He worked with the likes of Sam Shivute, Saki Nicodemus and Elijah Ngurare who wrote the foreword of the book.
During his spare time
The author describes himself as a bookworm and for that reason he always has something to read. “I developed a habit of book collection and that is why I should have one or two new books every month.” He is also a sports fanatic saying that he is an Arsenal fan. “If I am not watching sport, then I am either reading or watching some inspirational videos on YouTube.
‘Do it right the first time,’ “I believe that people should always do things right for the first time and not wait for the second time. I have to make sure that whatever project I pursue, I should do it right the first time and then I am good to go,” explains George.
To aspiring authors
“Well, they say that the sky is the limit but I disagree with that statement. The attitude is basically the limit, and that what limits people to the sky. To anyone who is aspiring to write, writing is one of the best things that you can do although it is not recognized in our country,” says George. For anyone wanting to be an author, George recommends research and knowledge of the target market. “Do research, engage and consult. It is not going to be easy; you will have to face a lot of rejection. I have been through the same, you might approached companies for sponsorship and you will receive thousands of rejection letters but you do not have to give up, you need to look forward have a dream and realistic goals,” urges the author. George firmly believes that if one wants to accomplish something they have to be determined and focused and very passionate about it.
George attended his primary school at Andoni Primary School in Oshikoto region, later went to Uukumwe Combined School and completed his high school at Etosha Secondary School. He holds a Bachelor degree in Business Administration from the then Polytechnic of Namibia now known as the Namibia University of Science and Technology. He completed an advance Diploma in Banking at the Institute of Bankers and has obtained a post graduate Certificate in Management from the University of Wits in South Africa
Currently, George is a third year finance management student at the International University of Management and at the same time studying for a post graduate at the University of Rhodes.
“The Story of Hope” book can be delivered countrywide. In Windhoek, it is available at the Book Den behind One Africa Television or at Via Bistro Restaurant in Ausspannplatz. In Walvis Bay, it is available with Aron Amunyela at Skype call centre in town. For other towns you may contact the author at 081 408 3328.