Inspiring a nation of readers on Mandela Day

As part of their education revolution, the NECT is creating a nation of readers – one book at a time.

July 18 saw volunteers from The National Education Collaboration Trust (NECT) and the Limpopo Department of Education effectively use their 67 minutes of activism to encourage a culture of reading at the Dikubu Primary School, Mookgophong District, Limpopo. This follows a public call made by the NECT, for both parents and children to honour Madiba’s legendary love for education by participating in a reading event.

In support of the event and to honour Madiba, Limpopo MEC, Hon. Ishmael Kgetjepe took part in the initiative by reading a snippet from Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom to everyone in attendance.

Kick-starting a reading revolution will assist in delivering on the NDP’s vision of a high quality of education for all South Africans. It will also increase South Africa’s levels of literacy, which is necessary if the country is to realise the NDP’s goal of ensuring that 90% of learners pass maths, science and languages with at least 50%, by 2030. The reading campaign follows discussions held at the NECT dialogue earlier this year, and the subsequent round table that the Minister extended to reading organisations across the country. The Minister has launched a book donation drive in her own capacity; encouraging businesses and individuals to donate books to learners. This campaign should extend to every school, community and stakeholders who support education. South Africa’s lack of literacy was highlighted at the recent O.R. Tambo Debates on Implementing the National Development Plan (NDP). During this discussion, Minister of Education Angie Motshekga asserted that a mere 5% of South Africans were advanced readers, and that this can be attributed to a lack of reading at home.

In an effort to change this statistic, the NECT will continuously encourage the creation of a reading nation, and activities such as this one at Dikubu Primary School is just the start of a bigger movement to encourage reading.

Commenting on the creation of a reading nation, NECT CEO Godwin Khosa said, “We ask all South Africans to make the time to pick up a book and read, sharing stories with youngsters.” It’s his assertion that everyone has to work together in order for South Africa to become a nation of readers. 











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