On International Women’s Day on the 9th of March 2019, the South African Democratic Teachers Union (SADTU) congregated in the Eastern Cape, Limpopo, Free State and North West to celebrate and honour over 5 000 women educators.   As part of the NECT’s partnership with SADTU, the National Reading Coalition (NRC) used the platforms to activate the reading revolution by donating books to educators who attended the celebrations.

Educators are seen as role models for learners, and the commemorations presented an ideal setting to urge teachers to be at the forefront of the reading revolution.  “Who can be the agents of the envisioned long-lasting change other than the 433 000 comrades who take the primary responsibility of bringing up our children? Let’s make reading cool again!” proclaimed the NECT CEO, Godwin Khosa, during his speech in Bethlehem.

The NRC succeeded in handing out books of various titles to the educators, including Winnie Mandela’s biography by Anne Marie du Preez Bezdrob, Half of a Yellow Sun by Nigerian Author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Little Sons by Zakes Mda, to mention but a few. The books are intended to be ‘travel books’, meaning recipients are encouraged to read and pass the book on to the next person, with the aim of one book reaching 10 people. A flyer with a ‘Reader’s Name’ list was inserted into each book. Readers are asked, after the reading the book, to take an image of their name written on the Reader’s Name list before passing the book on. The image must be sent back to the NECT team, and the reader stands a chance of winning a R500 voucher.

To ensure that the NECT keeps in touch with the educators, we collected their contact details and will continuously be communicating NRC initiatives and encouraging them to read.  The initiative was well received by the educators and allowed for a conversation encouraging reading for pleasure.

Author: Mongezi Masila