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Region C celebrates International Literacy Day!

Region C celebrates International Literacy Day!

Gwyneth Perry- Senior Librarian, Weltevreden Library

Knowledge is power! Literacy is one of the most important abilities available to humanity. Without the ability to read, write and understand, the future of society becomes stunted. Region C Libraries celebrated this important day on the calendar by holding two events in the region.

Weltevreden Park Library, on the Northern side of the region, hosted local author, Elaine Dodge, at a Tea and Inspiration event on Wednesday the 7th of September. She explained the importance of books and reading, while also encouraging attendees to try their hand at writing stories. She has published 4 books with the fifth one in progress. Her experience with the writing and publishing process was very enlightening and helpful, especially to a couple of budding authors who were in attendance. Tea and refreshments were enjoyed afterward, giving the community a chance to chat with Elaine.

Florida Regional Library hosted the main International Literacy day event on Thursday the 8th of September, with an in-person and live-streamed program.  It was geared to children and adults, with Johannesburg-based author, Tracy Millar starting the event by reading her picture book for children entitled ‘Gerald and friends. The primary school learners in attendance enjoyed the story and showed great skill and attention, as they easily answered questions presented to them about the book.

Region C Libraries have also collaborated with UNISA and were extremely honored to host Professor Moeketsi Letseka ( UNESCO chair on ODL at UNISA) as the keynote speaker for the day. He presented a very insightful lecture on Transforming Literacy Learning Spaces, bringing home the importance of literacy for all children in South Africa. Professor Letseka submitted a number of disturbing facts about the state of literacy in South Africa, emphasizing the importance of education, libraries, and universities. He encouraged his listeners to think globally, beyond just the borders of South Africa. A good education would lead to opportunities much further afield.  He emphasized that literacy also allows members of society to question Business and Government, as it gives society the ability to read about and understand events occurring around them. Overall, it was a thought-provoking talk, providing much food for thought.

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