Journalism alumna takes “K53 Junior” to school classrooms

17 March 2022

“I’m a big dreamer who doesn’t believe in constraints, who thinks equality is a myth and that one day we’re going to make the onions cry. And by that, I mean that us, the black youth, are going to change the narrative using our unfulfilled dreams as motivation,” said author and alumna of the Tshwane University of Technology’s Department of Journalism, Mbali Mavundla. 

Mbali Mavundla, TUT alumna and author of k53 Junior.

The young writer has partnered with Limpopo entrepreneur and workshop owner Mampatle Malapane, in putting together the ‘K53 Junior’, which she says is South Africa’s solution to addressing road safety, producing skilled drivers and safer roads. 

Mbali’s writing career started at TUT when she enrolled for a Journalism diploma in 2014. In her final year, she joined the Directorate of Corporate Affairs and Marketing as a junior journalist, writing for the staff newsletter and student magazine, HEITA! You might recognize her from her well-composed profile pieces on TUT staff members, under Gerrit Bester’s editorial guidance. After leaving TUT, Mbali moved away from traditional media and directed her career more towards creative writing and digital content creation. Mbali currently works as a copywriter and content creator for a creative agency in Rosebank. 

How did the idea of the ‘K53 Junior’ come about? 
“In 2018, I was in Limpopo working as a receptionist for a car workshop. One of the community projects in which my then employer and now project partner was involved, included helping high school learners obtain their driver’s licenses, all expenses funded by the workshop. The biggest challenge of this project was interpreting the K53 to these young kids. The short space of time it took for them to grasp the content as well as learning to drive at the same time, was overwhelming. The K53 is a pretty intricate book, especially at first glance. It wasn’t until last year in May, that we figured out how to execute. I designed the book using digital content creation tools. I had great fun doing it because I have been dying to do a kid’s project.”

The big idea for the pair is to collaborate with the department of education in order to have the book as an approved part of the curriculum in schools. According to Mbali, the book is the 1st part of the project. The 2nd part is to finish building a toy car that complements the idea of practical education. 

What does the future hold for Mbali?“
I see myself writing more and spending less time in my head in the future. I am certainly working on another piece of creative work, most definitely for kids, and maybe something grown-ups can enjoy too. We’ll see, but many stories will be told!”

Where to find the book
For now, the book is available at the Book Circle Capital in Melville. Anyone outside of Joburg can order the book online. We deliver anywhere in South Africa as long as you have a PEP Store pick-up point. The online link is: and we charge R60 for delivery. 

“People can follow Kids On The Road on Facebook and engage with us there.” Mbali concluded.  


For more information on the Tshwane University of Technology, please contact Phaphama Tshisikhawe, Corporate Affairs and Marketing.
Tel: +27 12 382 4711  Email: