Tafadzwa Zimoyo Senior Arts Reporter
Organisers of Zimbabwe’s arts, culture and business festivals dubbed ZimThrive Initiative, have said preparations are at an advanced stage for the event slated for April 1-30.
The initiative will run under the theme, “Homecoming”, in a bid to bring the country together to innovate in areas that include tourism, business and entertainment.
Events will be hosted in Harare, Bulawayo, Victoria Falls and Kariba, among other places. It is expected that the festival will unite Zimbabweans living in the Diaspora with locals. Activities will centre on business, sports, arts, entertainment, fashion and cultural events.
ZimThrive co-founders, United States based Mildred Munjanganja and Mike Tashaya from the United Kingdom, said they were excited about the initiative whose aim was to reinforce unity, build new and old friendships and to create a stronger and self-sufficient nation.
Tashaya, highlighted that the month long event would boost tourism as they were expecting a lot of Diasporans to participate.
He said, so far 60 events had been registered with the road tour presentation .
“We are excited to be launching this global socio-economic initiative in Zimbabwe, which will see thousands of Zimbabweans reunite for a whole month of celebration in our native country.
“We wanted a platform that will create continuous dialogue and opportunities for the Zimbabwean community abroad to interact with their country in a productive and mutually beneficial way so that we can re-engage with our roots, enjoy and rebuild our beautiful country. “It will be the biggest event ever staged in the country and the first time something of this magnitude has ever been done.”
“It is particularly significant as it is a project for Zimbabweans, spearheaded by Zimbabweans,” he said.
He said some of the events included an international chief executive eat out, a bridal show, golf festival and a family fun day among others.
Asked how they came up with the initiative, Munjanganja said: “It came out of a fractured heart. A heart whose half resides in one country while the other half, its culture, heritage, language and family reside in Zimbabwe.
“Like most people in the Diaspora, our tourist destinations of choice were everywhere else in the world, South Africa, Paris, Asia but rarely Zimbabwe, whose sunsets evoke feelings nostalgia, whose sense of wonder is unparalleled.”
I believe our economy could stand to benefit from our intentional attention.
“We want to go home to be entertained by our artistes, eat our local foods and buy art and crafts made by our own people.”
We want to bring everyone home from the Diaspora to strengthen our identity and to collaborate with locals to bring back the unity and prosperity of our nation.”