MTHIYANE AIMS TO CREATE AN ANTI-RACIST SOCIETY THROUGH HIS COOKING SHOW, ANTI-RACIST HOT DOG
A Durban University of Technology (DUT) Alumnus in Town and Regional Planning, Wandile Mthiyane has recently launched a cooking show called the Anti-Racist Hot Dog.
His Durban cooking show launch had a great turnout of over 70 people, including the US Consulate General in Durban, Anne Linnee.
“We had a great time eating hot dogs and having a constructive dialogue about curating and maintaining an inclusive culture within our businesses, schools, and communities. We have lunch-and-learn experiences with hot dogs, a cooking show, and insightful dialogue for companies looking to build inclusive cultures. Our one-hour educational experiences fuse fun cultural learning with informative and interactive discussions centred around home recipes. The show is out weekly or monthly, taking place over six sessions. These shows facilitate conversations that will build a more inclusive company culture by equipping leaders and employees with the information necessary to create inclusive company culture by providing leaders and employees the information needed to make a workplace where everyone belongs and thrives,” he said.
Mthiyane is no stranger to accolades having been selected as one of 20 ‘Obama Leaders’ from South Africa, who was part of the prestigious Obama Foundation cohort in 2019. This led to him being nominated for the UN Local Projects Challenge’s Choice Awards. He was also recently named top 12 Black Architects Making History today by the prestigious Architizer.
Mthiyane explains how the show came about, saying that in 2020 he was racially discriminated against and barred from eating dinner at a popular Durban restaurant.
“We started a food stand, the Anti-Racist Hot Dog, near where the restaurant is located. We had hot dogs, house music, and conversation about race. Our events drew people of different races, ages, and religions, to come and talk about what an inclusive Durban looks like. This was a transformational and healing experience for the city, we started doing it monthly at the KZNSA Art Gallery, and even president Obama tweeted about it,” he said.
Mthiyane elaborated that upon creating an impact in Durban, South Africans who genuinely want to create an anti-racist society, they ought to focus on places where they spend most of their time, workplaces, and schools.
“We wanted to create engaging experiences that turn workplaces into communities we all belong,” he added.
He commented that conversations about race are challenging in any situation. Yet, counterintuitively, the fear of sounding racist or ‘saying the wrong thing’ is a barrier to building a more inclusive workforce. He expressed that as a result, immersive events and learning videos are curated to create a brave space where it is easier for participants to engage actively with the presented ideas.
“First, we use a survey to gauge your current culture. Then, we use light-hearted music, tasty food, and storytelling to jumpstart the challenging conversations necessary to build a company-wide culture of inclusion. Finally, our cooking class videos use cultural recipes as a fun pretence to explore vital topics about racism in a memorable and informative format,” relayed Mthiyane.
He indicated that they have had the privilege of working with Deloitte Global, Yale School of Architecture, Obama Foundation, and Heart Howerton in America.
“We are bringing it back home to help transform South African schools and workplaces,” he said.
The 30-minute lunch-learn educational anti-racist hot dog show fuses fun cultural learning with informational and interactive dialogue-centred around home recipes. It comes with 30-minute facilitation for companies and schools partnered with the Anti-Racist Hot Dog in their inclusion journey. They also release weekly short snippets on YouTube for the general public.
Over six sessions, the show is out weekly or monthly; these videos and virtual facilitated dialogues will build more inclusive company culture by equipping leaders and employees with the information necessary to address racism head-on.
“We will be doing a public screening in Johannesburg on the 15th of December 2022 and another in Cape Town on the 17th of December 2022 and people interested can sign up for these on the website,” he said.
Going forward, Mthiyane is immensely excited about the show.
“We are here to help South African companies harness their uncommon pairing to gain a competitive edge,” he commented.
Mthiyane further conveyed that they turn work places and schools into communities they all belong to by helping leaders build a creative, innovative, inclusive, and fun workplace.
“Simply put, we throw parties to end racism. We do all this to help teams work better together, retain better, and increase yield while having fun. Preparing and enjoying food has always been a tool for building bridges between strangers; our host uses the kitchen as a disarming environment,” he said.
To better understand the show, go to: https://www.antiracisthotdog.com/
Pictured: Wandile Mthiyane