Storybooks that feature African heritage and culture are made available to children and adolescents through the partnership of MySchool and Biblionef. For 14 years now, Biblionef has been committed to its mandate of providing a foundation for literacy by donating books to children’s organizations in South Africa. Biblionef has already donated more than a million books benefiting more than 3 million children through more than 6,000 organizations operating in the country.
MySchool and Biblionef have recently partnered. MySchool’s Thuso Fund donated the amount of R70,000 for five schools located in rural areas to receive brand new storybooks in English, isiZulu, Xitsonga, and Sesotho. The Thuso Fund was established by MySchool to support charities and under-resourced schools across South Africa.
New books find new homes
The monetary donation was used to make available around 1,000 books for a number of South African schools. Six hundred books were sent to three schools which benefit more than 3,000 KZN learners. The three schools are Kwenzokuhle Primary School in Muden, to Mkhize Combined School in Hathikulu, and Nhlalakahle Primary School Mhlumayo village. The rest will benefit students going to Pfuxetani Primary School in Mavalani Village and Ya Tshepepe Intermediate School in Botshabelo.
Learning through books
South Africa is one of the many countries around the world that has many under-resourced remote rural communities. The schools in these areas often do not have the resources to make books in the mother tongue available to the children.
Reading storybooks is one way for children to learn about the world around them. This is just one of the many benefits of reading. Other benefits include enhanced concentration and attention, and development of communication skills.
Biblionef South Africa Executive Director Jean Williams extended much gratitude to My School for supporting South African youth, particularly those from remote communities. She also thanked MySchool for sharing Biblionef’s passion.
Biblionef is tireless in its work of providing new books to schools and libraries in South Africa who are serving the needs of needy children. The organization’s emphasis is in providing books to remote rural communities, townships, and informal settlements. This dynamic organization is also unique in that it is the only organization in the country that donates books in all of the 11 official languages of South Africa.
One step closer
Biblionef’s current project with MySchool is another initiative that is in line with its mission which is to provide adolescents and children from under-resourced communities in South Africa with new books in the mother tongue in order to stimulate their curiosity and desire to learn and therefore laying a foundation of knowledge. Biblionef donates only new books, believing that “every child is worth of receiving new books.”
The wonderful world of books
Reading for pleasure sparks and develops children’s imagination and this is the key in literacy development, according to Williams. Biblionef is also at the forefront of increasing the availability of publications in the mother tongue. It works with writers and publishers and commissions new books in the South African minority languages.
Photo Credit: Students in Djibouti explore newly donated books