African Literature Development Program

The African Australian Literature Development Program is an initiative to support, develop, share and celebrate the richness of the stories of African Australians within the multi-cultural context of Western Sydney.

Run by WestWords and the African Australian Advocacy Centre, and supported by the Adès Family Foundation, the program aims, through stories, to create a bridge of understanding and empathy between communities and generations, create a sense of belonging and pride.

The program began in 2020 with an online writers’ group as we traversed the upheavals the pandemic brought to our lives. In December we launched their first publication: Smile ‘Cross the Oceans to read it online continue scrolling.

In 2022 the online group continues and we are SO excited to be launching 6 week Course in Creative Non Fiction Writing. The course will run for 6 weeks on Tuesday nights at 7pm via Zoom. 

The cost of the course is $110 for six weeks. (Payments via bank deposit)

***If you are unable to pay meet the cost, but you would still like to participate, please contact

If you would like to enrol, please complete the form below and we’ll be in contact to welcome you in.



Proudly supported by Blacktown City Council

If you would like more information or to join any one of these groups please contact our Associate Producer Chris:

Introducing our Facilitator

Mawunyo Gbogbo

Mawunyo Gbogbo

Music & Pop Culture Reporter for Double J and ABC News

An award-winning radio and TV producer. Her debut book, Hip Hop & Hymns will be published by Penguin Books this year and is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its arts funding and advisory body. She has a Bachelor of Arts (Communication – Journalism) from Charles Sturt University in Bathurst and a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from the University of Technology Sydney.

African Australian Writers - 6 Week Course

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Thank you so much for registering your interest. We will be in touch to confirm the group details. At this time the next 6-week course will begin on 23rd August at 7pm. If you have any further queries please contact
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Program supported by

The African Australian Advocacy Centre (AAAC) 

The new peak body representing the interests of African Australian Communities by providing innovative research, advocacy and policy outcomes in collaboration with academic institutions, government and non-government agencies be Australia’s platform and channel for African Australians to communicate their vision, their cultural diversity and heritage, their energy, and their entrepreneurial innovation from an African-Australian perspective. The leadership team represents more than 15 African Australian communities.

The Adès Family Foundation

smile ‘cross the oceans

The African Literature Development program is designed to support, develop and promote African Australian writers from Western Sydney. It began when Noël Zihabamwe, founder and Chair of the African Australian Advocacy Centre approached WestWords with one clear aim – to provide the means by which members of the African Australian community could tell and celebrate their own stories, in their own voices.

In a year of difficulty where acts of community building and skills development have radically changed we moved a comprehensive program of intended workshops, events and writing groups online. This resulted in us facilitating four groups focusing on fiction and non-fiction, graphic novels and comics, writing for children, and poetry. This publication marks the culmination of the first of three years for the program.

from Noël Yandamutso Zihabamwe,
co-founder and Chair of the African Australian Advocacy Centre
Africans throughout the aeons have told stories to their young people about the land, culture, language and customs, and they in turn have passed it on to subsequent generations. This rich cultural vein can be lost if it is not passed on and recorded, especially if people move to other continents, far away from the traditional wisdom and teachings.

This program allows the expression of a rich tradition of storytelling for African Australians, giving them the opportunity to reach out to their communities, their neighbourhoods and their new homelands, and to show other Australians how richly imbued with energy, culture, sensitivity, wisdom, laughter and joy they truly are, as they seek to establish themselves in a new culture.

WestWords would like to thank Nöel Yandamutso Zihabamwe and Daniel Gobena and everyone from the African Australian Advocacy Centre for their knowledge, guidance and collaboration; Lesley, David and Julia from the Adès Family Foundation without whose ongoing support this program could not exist.

The African Australian Literature Development Program is proudly supported by the Adès Family Foundation

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