Television personality Maps Maponyane delivered a speech at Kama Primary in New Brighton, Port Elizabeth on 23 April for World Book Day, stating that he wants learners across South Africa to know that reading for fun can ignite potential and open a door of endless possibilities.
The message was made possible by Novus Holdings, which partnered with New Africa Education Foundation (NAEF), a Non-profit Organisation, to improve literacy levels across South Africa.
The celebrity dressed up as his favourite childhood book character, Dr Seuss, and read the popular story ‘Oh, the places you’ll go!’ to a jam-packed auditorium of eager learners who could not wait to meet their role-model. Maponyane autographed and donated a copy of the book to the school.
‘Growing up I had a stutter and lacked self-esteem. Through reading and cultivating a love for books, I overcame this challenge. Today I am thrilled to spread the message that reading is cool. Reading has the power to transform lives by lifting the youth out of dire circumstances, and I believe that education is the answer to unlocking our country’s potential,’ said Maponyane.
In addition, Novus Holdings, together with NAEF, donated seven mobile libraries to each grade at Kama Primary. The mobile libraries can be wheeled from one classroom to another, making them easily accessible to all learners. The initiative forms part of the ‘Read to Lead’ campaign, which aims to promote reading for pleasure and highlight why literacy is the gateway to a better future.
Mike Ehret, group executive for business development at Novus Holdings, said that the time is now for corporate South Africa to do its part to improve literacy rates in the country. Education plays a pivotal role in South Africa’s landscape as it aids in providing the critical skills needed for the country’s economic growth in the long-term.
‘We believe that education is the key to upliftment. It was encouraging to work with Maps as he shares this belief, passion and commitment to growing literacy in South Africa. Progress in education is achievable if we stand together to make reading a priority,’ said Ehret.
Coordinated by Ahmed Motala of NAEF, over 20 mobile libraries have been donated to schools across KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and the Western Cape. ‘Mobile libraries excite learners and ignite a passion for knowledge so essential in progressing education and learning,’ added Ehret.
Novus Holdings has pledged to continue to donate libraries to schools across South Africa.