Minister Mbombo officially closes National Book Week 2014
The Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport (DCAS) in partnership with the South African Book Development Council (SABDC) and the Department of Arts and Culture hosted the closing ceremony of the National Book Week at Drakenstein Public Library in Paarl on 6 September 2014.
National Book Week, running for the 5th year, was celebrated from 1 – 7 September 2014. This year’s programme was expanded with it being hosted in six provinces with the aid of the Book Week Tour bus which also ended its week long journey in Paarl. The bus was host to National Book Week ambassadors, motivational speakers, authors and storytellers who all made their contribution at the different events in the various provinces.
The programme was officiated by South African celebrity and National Book Week Ambassador, Natalie Becker. The entertaining and engaging programme included various cultural performances from local schools and community based organisations as well as poetry recitals by poet Paul Said.
Minister Nomafrench Mbombo delivered the key note address where she extended her thanks to all the role players in making this week such a success. “National Book Week is the pride and joy of our country as it represents our efforts of truly building a reading and an informed nation.” said the Minister.
A study conducted by SABDC which focused on the reading habits of South African adults, showed that only 14% of South Africans are avid book readers and a mere 5% of parents read to their children. Elitha van der Sandt, Chief Executive Officer of the SABDC said “Because of this we need to give life to books and promote the magic of books and reading”.
Heidre Slingers, a Grade 7 learner from Soetendal Primary in Wellington, participated in the National Book Week festivities and said she played word building games and learned new words. National Book is a means for DCAS to inculcate a culture of reading and lifelong reading throughout the province.