World Book Day is celebrated on Friday, 23 April this year, casting the educational spotlight on the benefits of reading in schools and ways to increase literacy rates amongst learners, especially those located within disadvantaged communities.
Konica Minolta South Africa’s Mobile Library visits various schools across Gauteng every year, ensuring learners have the opportunity to touch the pages of beautiful books filled with quirky illustrations and new words to discover. The learners are able to spend time browsing for exciting new books to take home, working on their reading skills and spend time with high quality printing devices enabling them to add pizazz to their homework.
The Konica Minolta’s Mobile Library project began when Konica Minolta South Africa invited The Edu-Care Foundation to their offices to discuss their educational needs. Through their discussions, the need for support in developing literacy within schools was identified and the Mobile Library initiative was born. A lot of research took place and in 2012, the Mobile Library hit the road. This library was entrusted to The Edu-Care Foundation, a non-profit organisation that uses its unique R.E.A.D. initiative (respect, education, attitude and discipline) to assist children in the foundation phase and improve their reading ability.
The Mobile Library also functions as an IT Centre, and has a homework/study centre based in Davidsonsville, Roodepoort. The schools being visited by the Mobile Library are based within disadvantaged communities. The study centre element enables Edu-Care to ensure that no learner is left behind, because they do not have the resources to do homework or complete projects.
“Konica Minolta South Africa assist us greatly by supplying us with all the necessary paper and printing equipment that we need in order to run the IT Centre and help the learners thrive,” says Daleen Havenga, marketing director at The Edu-Care Foundation.
“We strongly believe that we can make a significant difference by helping just one child, but when we help every child that that we can, we make a remarkable difference. We don’t stop trying and keep helping each child we encounter to grow their literacy skills,” concludes Havenga.
In accordance with COVID regulations the schools being serviced by the Mobile Library in 2021 are experiencing a different type of Mobile Library for the time being with limited risk. Currently the Konica Minolta South Africa Mobile Library’s rural schools get books delivered to them directly and the following week the books are collected and exchanged for new ones, to ensure the learners are reading a variety of stimulating books.
The schools being serviced by Konica Minolta South Africa’s Mobile Library are located in the Westrand of Johannesburg. They include Roodepoort Primary, Jozua Naude Primary, Princess Primary, Christian Family College, Kwansimakwe Primary and Gjima Primary. New schools that are being added to the list include Ebenezer Primary and Merlwood Primary.