Johannesburg – Local musicians and Shout SA founders, Danny K and Kabelo, gave Freedom Park a welcome burst of star power by launching a new container library at Somelulwazi Primary School in Soweto on Wednesday, 23 April. The event forms part of the Mandela Day Library initiative, a partnership between the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory and Cape Town based NGO Breadline Africa.
“Storytelling and reading is an integral part of growing up, it has been an honour to play our part in the Mandela Day library initiative – literacy is a human right,” well-known South African artist, celebrity and activist for change Danny K said. “We promote education not incarceration – by giving our youth a chance to liberate their imaginations, we can stop crime before it has a chance to start.
Over the past four years 40 container libraries have been rolled out to some of the most impoverished schools in the country, with more than 30 000 school children having been reached as a result of the initiative. The Mandela Day Libraries project is made possible through corporate funding and support – the Somelulwazi Primary School library and two other libraries in Cape Town and Limpopo were funded and placed by Shout SA. BBDO and its non-profit arm, The MAL Foundation, collaborated with Architects of Justice, , Breadline Africa and the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory to place the S.E.E.D (Schools Extended Education Design) containers.
“It is through the generosity of South Africans who downloaded the song You’re the Voice that Shout can handover this library to the community of Freedom Park. Thank you to our followers, your donations made this library a possibility,” an emotional Danny K said.
“In a country like South Africa, creativity has the power to change things, to put something back in a way that touches people,” Chief Creative Officer of BBDO SA and co-founder of ad agency Net#work BBDO, Mike Schalit said. “Twenty years after independence, there has to be a more collaborative way for brands to create and sustain a better South Africa. It’s not just about nagging at social consciousness; it’s about relevance, pragmatism and a creative edge. It’s about making a real difference to society and the bottom line through compelling design solutions.”
“Every school should have access to a library and every child should be able to read, write and be given sufficient resources to maximise their learning experience; sadly this is not the case in many schools across the country,” Project manager for Breadline Africa, Jade Orgill said.
Since their establishment 21-years-ago Breadline Africa has rolled out more than 190 containers to some of the most impoverished communities in South Africa. The disused shipping containers are renovated and used as soup kitchens, libraries, educare centres and ablution blocks.
“I am inspired by the work being done by Breadline Africa and jumped at the chance to make a difference” co-founder of ShoutSA Kabelo said. “In a country like South Africa, where literacy is exceptionally low, access to books is extremely important. We need to get our youth to understand the power of reading in order to understand its impact on their future. Education opens up options way beyond crime.”
For more information, to get involved or to sponsor the Mandela Day Libraries Project, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call 021 418 0322.
Distributed by Be-cause Integrated Communications:
082 814 8617 / 021 447 1082
On behalf of Breadline Africa:
Director: Tim Smith
Project manager: Jade Orgill