More books for more children

The One Book, One Child national reading campaign for primary schools has received a donation of books worth N$50 000 from First National Bank’s FirtRand Namibia Foundation Trust.

19 November 2019 | Education

Ester Kamati

On 12 November, the National Library proudly hosted the donation of 308 books towards the One Book, One Child reading campaign, which aims to foster a reading culture among schoolchildren nationwide.

The books will be distributed to primary schools in all the regions, said Namutenya Hamaalwa, the deputy director of Namibia Library and Archive Services (NLAS).

Hamaalwa gave the assurance that the books would be put to good use and emphasised the importance of reading to personal advancement and national development.

She added that the campaign would also empower school librarians in encouraging children to read during dedicated reading periods.

“Many times you find ten kids, one book,” she said.

“We felt that that is not sufficient if we are serious about promoting a reading culture in the country.”

The donation supports the campaign by ensuring sufficient material for children and enabling them to take books home and read for pleasure.

“Through reading and the search for knowledge, we open our hearts and minds to understanding,” said author, publisher and book reviewer Jane Katjavivi in her capacity as a trustee of the FirstRand Namibia Foundation Trust.

She added that through the One Book, One Child campaign, learners and teachers alike will expand and deepen their love for books.

“They know there is magic inside,” Katjavivi said about the excitement of children when they see a book and their eagerness to open another one.

“We are pleased to be part of the national collective effort to build a reading culture for our children,” she said.

She added that the primary school phase is a critical time for children as they develop personality, character and a love of knowledge, which needs to be nurtured.

“We can acquire knowledge and change society and teach our children to love and respect each other,” she said about the importance of reading.

NLAS director Sarah Negumbo stated that reading is essential for literacy development and mind stimulation.

“Imagination is more important than knowledge. While knowledge defines all we currently know and understand, imagination points to all we might yet discover and create,” she said.

Negumbo said school libraries deserved appreciation, as they “provide the energy that fuels the imagination”.

She concluded by thanking FirstRand Namibia for their contribution and dedication in improving the lives of schoolchildren.

Mazinza Ndala received the books on her behalf.

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