Kathryn van den Berg
“I solemnly swear that I am up to no good” is a phrase that the up-and coming Harry Potter Alliance Chapter in Stellenbosch does not take seriously at all.
The goal of this society is to give fans of the Harry Potter world a chance to do good. Through forming a society inspired by a celebration of JK Rowling’s renowned books, members will actively get involved in planning and participating in community service around Stellenbosch.
Julieanne Knupp, a second year BSc student who is a lover of Potter’s world, explains that her idea for this society was inspired by the NGO, Harry-Potter Alliance, which is based in America. This organisation gathers fans of Harry Potter from all over the world, and uses their passion for the Potter books as a backdrop for the community service schemes that they implement.
Knupp said that love of the Wizarding World inspires people to help the community, which is also the goal of the Harry Potter Alliance. She explained that the Harry Potter books clearly preach love, respect and self-sacrifice for the greater good, which is why they are the perfect inspiration for a community-service based society.
The society aims to start off their campaign by prompting a soup kitchen event in which members are encouraged to advertise what the Harry Potter Alliance Chapter is all about. On top of this opening event, themed parties, movie marathons, book drives and formals (specifically the ‘Yule Ball’ in the third term) are in the process of being organised.
Knupp promised to keep students informed about initiatives throughout the year on the society’s Facebook and Twitter pages.
The Harry Potter Alliance Chapter needs at least 20 student signatures in order to be recognised as an official Stellenbosch University society.