ATKV backs Afrikaans advertising

Tue, 10 Apr 2012 13:01
ATKV group MD Japie Gouws

Afrikaans language and cultural organisation the ATKV is once again backing the Pendoring Advertising Awards, which promote marketing and advertising in Afrikaans.

“It is paramount for the ATKV that Afrikaans is maintained on all levels, including the marketing and advertising industry. Because Afrikaans is under pressure in the latter, and to promote awareness of Afrikaans across the board, the ATKV is once again standing firmly behind the Pendoring Advertising Awards,” says Japie Gouws, group MD of the ATKV.

“Although the ATKV is thoroughly inclusive and acknowledges regional languages and dialects, the organisation’s four main focus areas – language, arts, communities and education – clearly indicate why Afrikaans in the broader sense is important to us and our members. Afrikaans is not only a ‘spoken language’; it’s multi-faceted and has a firm foundation, so it’s imperative that it should be maintained,” he stresses.

In spite of the pressure that Afrikaans currently faces on many fronts, there is, nonetheless, still considerable loyalty, and people increasingly want to make a contribution to ensure the survival of Afrikaans. Even at government level Afrikaans is punted, and spokespeople occasionally deliver speeches in Afrikaans, Gouws points out.

Participation across language and cultural divides in some of the ATKV’s flagship projects, confirms a growing interest in Afrikaans, as well as the will to speak the language well, particularly among the younger generation, he adds.

“It’s becoming increasingly difficult to accommodate all the schools that want to participate in the ATKV’s debating competitions. Pupils and students across the entire language and cultural spectrum line up to participate because the competition equips them with important debating skills. Interestingly enough, a black pupil last year walked away with the top award for the best language user in the final round.”

The ATKV’s annual ‘Sêr’ (serenade) competition at university level is equally well supported, which proves that students also have a keen interest in Afrikaans.

“Likewise, among the younger generation, the ATKV is most popular. Of the nearly 300 branches, 75 are youth branches. As our branches are project driven, their participation shows that they are keen to put shoulder to the wheel to promote Afrikaans.”

Through its reading projects, the ATKV wants children to read and enjoy Afrikaans, says Gouws. Loads of Afrikaans children’s books are distributed annually to schools so that children themselves can determine who deserves the children’s book awards at the annual ATKV Woordveertjies.

The writers’ school in Potchefstroom is another popular ATKV project where budding authors can master the art of writing a book. The fact that the school is celebrating its 22nd year of existence is evidence of its continued popularity.

“Breyten Breytenbach once predicted that Afrikaans was destined to die in his life time. We absolutely disagree. As co-founder of Pendoring as well as of the South African Language Council (SA Taalraad), the ATKV is actively working to ensure the survival of Afrikaans at all levels,” Gouws stresses.

Franette Klerck, Pendoring GM, says the ATKV was not only instrumental in establishing the Pendoring Advertising Awards, but for the past 18 years the organisation has firmly supported Afrikaans advertising.

“The ATKV is a shining example when it comes to the promotion of Afrikaans, in various spheres. As gold Pendoring sponsor, the organisation is a true stalwart that contributes in no small measure to keep Afrikaans advertising alive and well.”