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WHISPER FROM THE HEART (article first published : 2006-07-24)

South African poet Stan Almendro launched the Whisper from the Heart Poetry Club some three years ago. He recently announced that the competition has now been expanded to include Poetry; Short Stories; Art (sketches) and Photography.

Apart from offering to publish the works of the students, the club has a host of related services.

The team, IT specialist Wynand Labuschagne; administration manager Giselle Visser and Stan Almendro (as editor and poet) has developed a club catering for a wide spectrum of the arts. It offers competitions for scholars and adults, pen pal club, African art by Cameron Juby, etched leather art from Danie Potgieter, a range of pottery by Adrian Kirston as well as art, for the ardent art lover through an affiliation with Art Price.

The Club has paid out in excess of R80,000 in prizes to scholars (poets) and schools since its inception in 2004 and has now also launched the 2006 schools competition for English and Afrikaans Poems; Short Stories; Art (sketches) & Photography The closing date for the schools competition is September 30. The Adult (open) competition which is only for poetry, also closes on this date.

The club has published its first schools anthology, Whisper from the Heart, and is in the process of publishing more anthologies this year. All anthologies available from the office on fax 013 93 23182.

“We have also formed an association with Amazon where we offer books, CD’s and DVD’s that are of specific interest to poetry and art lovers,” says Stan. “Our aim is to grow African poetry and art. The talent in our country is immense and we feel that by joining our club and sending in contributions will make the literary and art world stand up and see what we have to offer. Our hopes for the web site are to show our country’s valuable source of talent. We welcome poetry and art contributions.”

The club has also formed an alliance with an African tour facility that is being offered via the web site. This opens up prospects for visitors to visit South Africa and see what is on offer by way of tours and art of the African wild game.

“Our current competition is open to scholars, who need to enter via their respective schools,” comments Stan. “Non-scholars may also enter under an adult category. Super prizes can be won and this also opens up the opportunity to have poems published in a number of anthologies.”

Interested poets (adults and schools) can visit www.whisperpoetry.com or contact the office on 013 932 3182.

Correspondence can be addressed to Whisper from the Heart Poetry Club, PO Box 1466, Alberton, 1450, South Africa.




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