The Red Location Museum in New Brighton will come alive with book-related activities as National Book Week returns to the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality from 05-07 September.
With this year’s theme of “The Books of Our Lives,” National Book Week embarks on a creative campaign which reveals to South Africans the many ways in which books remain our faithful companions on the road of life, prodding us, guiding us, teasing us, and sweeping us away into history, fantasy and the inner lives of others so different, and yet so similar, to ours.
The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality and the Eastern Cape Department of Sports, Recreation, Arts and Culture have renewed their partnership with the South African Book Development Council (SABDC) to host National Book Week in Port Elizabeth as the official host city and central hub for National Book Week activities.
“I would like to express my heartfelt appreciation on behalf of the Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality and its residents that we were chosen to host all these exciting activities. Reading – as part of the important process of educating our youth – remains crucial if we would like to break the back of poverty, unemployment and inequality. I hope that everybody will have fun and enjoy the stimulating activities planned,” Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Executive Mayor Benson Fihla said.
Book Discussions, Word-a-thon, specialized workshops by the likes of Zakes Mda and Deon Meyer, Family Literacy Workshops, Motivational Talks by celebrity ambassadors such as Bonnie Henna and Aaron Moloisi, Authors” Programme, Storytelling, Reading Tents and a Praise-singing workshop by Zolani Mkiva lie at the core of this year’s activities.
Reading statistics report that only 14% of the South African population are active book readers, and a mere 5% of parents read to their children. National Book Week is an important initiative in encouraging the nation to value reading as a fun and pleasurable activity and to showcase how reading can easily be incorporated into one”s daily lifestyle.
Xoliswa Tom, MEC for the Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture says:
“As champions and leaders in the campaign to encourage our people to read, we invite everyone; especially women and children to come and learn, participate in the activities that that will enlighten them to the endless opportunities that come with reading. An ability to read restores dignity in our communities and opens doors that will empower our people to deal effectively with the triple challenges of poverty, inequality and underdevelopment. Let us take wisdom from an old Chinese proverb that reads, “If you plan for one year, plant rice. If you plan for ten years, plant trees. If you plan for one hundred years, educate mankind.” Come to National Book Week so that you can Read and Share!”
A credible list of well-known South African celebrities and authors will descend upon Port Elizabeth to tell the story of “The Books of Our Lives.” The list includes, but not limited to the following: Zakes Mda, Deon Meyer, Chad Saaiman, Gcina Mhlophe, Bonnie Henna and Zolani Mkiva
Entrance to National Book Week programmes is free, enabling schools, families and the general public to attend. Various industry stakeholders will be invited to participate in the exhibitions, seminars and training activities.
The South African Book Development Council is also proud to announce a new partnership with the Department of Correctional Services (DCS) for National Book Week 2013.
As the reading culture remains minimal, Regional activities:DCS is working towards promoting a culture of reading and writing in their correctional centers and to project reading as a fun activity that expands horizons of knowledge for both offenders and officials.
The Department finds itself very fortunate to partner with the SABDC in order to achieve Rehabilitation through the culture of reading and writing.
- Grahamstown will host a Children”s Literature Festival in conjuction with Puku IsiXhosa Story Festival from 06-08 September, as part of their celebrations for National Book Week.
- The Western Cape Library Services will be hosting a National Book Week programme in Atlantis through the Office of the MEC for Cultural Affairs and Sports.
- Kalahari.Com will have a 30% sale on all their local books during National Book Week and will donate a number of Gobii e-readers as giveaways to National Book Week, as part of their support for the campaign.
- Mini-National Book Week in Ntabankulu (rural Eastern Cape) from 02 September. Activities include book debates, reading and poetry.
- Opening of a Modular Library in Herschel from 05-07 September and the activities include Book Discussions and Orphanage visits.
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