According to this insightful article by Nal’ibali, an award-winning national reading-for-enjoyment campaign, 78% of Grade Four learners in South Africa cannot read for basic meaning in any national language. This alarming statistic means an unavoidable negative affect on the country's long-term socio-economic wellbeing. It could lead to an entire generation lacking the basic skills to escape a life of poverty, and in turn, the inability to pass along literacy to their own children.
April is World Book Day. I feel so privileged to be part of The One Percent Movement (the non-profit that I work for), that will be creating reading corners in the five grade one classes of Fisantekraal Primary this month. In partnership with my fabulous printers, Comprint in Stellenbosch, and driven by my personal love for reading and wildlife (and to continue giving back during my business' birthday month!), I am donating five laminated SA Animal Alphabet posters that will be added to the reading corners.
Fisantekraal is located on the outskirts of Durbanville. The school opened its doors in 2021, following a desperate outcry from the impoverished community for a school closer to home. Even with limited resources, the school is going strong -- their numbers doubled within a year of opening, and the high school is currently under construction.
I'll be sure to share some photos of the reading corners here next month. We can't wait to get them set up, and see the little one's faces light up! There is nothing quite like the gift of reading: It opens doors to magical worlds; it is a safe space to retreat to; a place of learning and growing; it unlocks the imagination and lays the world at one's feet...
See the full range of SA Animal Alphabet gifts in my online shop: