“Readers are leaders, leaders are readers” were the wise words bestowed by Executive Mayor Athol Trollip at the official launch of Library Week at the Ekukhanyiseni Library in KwaNobuhle Uitenhage on 12 March 2018.
Libraries play an important role in communities throughout South Africa because they provide access to information on everything that exists. Libraries provide an opportunity to fight unemployment illiteracy; they allow people to expand they creativity; they provide internet access and help with homework; they host story-time sessions and language programmes; they provide free accessible space for reading and studying; they stock information resources and offer services to everyone. The Elukhanyisweni Library is a state-of-the-art library; one of three libraries throughout the city that has facilities that cater for visually impaired people.
NMBM Library Services will be leading the 2018 Library Week programme, which will be celebrated at all 25 public libraries, with special events for library users such as Mini Lib Launch at the Chatty Library (22 March 2018), facilitated by South African Library for the Blind, as well as city wide membership drives (22 and 23 March 2018). Other notable programmes for the Week include the Library Awareness Campaign being rolled out at the Korsten Library (20 March 2018). The full programme for the Week will be available at all libraries and on the NMBM website.
NMBM Libraries will be participating in Library Week by running programmes with schools, clinics, old age homes and crèches for storytelling and the promotion of reading, books and library services.
Executive Mayor Trollip urged parents to encourage their children to make use of the Municipal libraries across the city.
South African Library Week is celebrated annually under the guidance of Library and Information Association of South Africa (LIASA), the Library and Information Association of South Africa and will this year take place from 16-23 March 2018. Library Week 2018 celebrates the founding principles of libraries, that they are repositories of knowledge for future generations while at the same time making that knowledge accessible to all who need it. The Week highlights the role that libraries play in a democratic society, advancing literacy and making the basic human right of freedom of access to information a reality. During this period, LIASA aims to make all South Africans aware that libraries contribute to nation-building and improving the quality of life of all who use them.
Aviwe Mthimkulu (12) a learner from Phakamisa Primary School, said that being at the library has enabled him to learn a lot about the world and has improved his ability to read and write.