Kanya was born in Mdantsane, a township near to the city of East London in South Africa’s Eastern Cape province. He studied Marketing at tertiary education level, and has worked periodically in business. In 2014, Kanya began working for Mzantsi Wakho as a community guide, and was soon promoted to the position of research assistant. From 2014-2015, he worked within both the qualitative and quantitative research teams, conducting copious interviews and observations with study participants. In 2018, Kanya rejoined the project as a research assistant. He conducts interviews and focus groups, and spends a great deal of time on transcription. He also manages the field budget, in collaboration with other colleagues. Speaking about his work within the project, Kanya says: ‘Mzantsi Wakho has brought some fresh air into my life, and reignited the passion I have for people.’