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The City’s school holiday programme impresses MMC Print E-mail
18 April 2017
Library Week

The City of Johannesburg’s Member of the Mayoral Committee for Community Development, Cllr Nonhlanhla Sifumba, visited two public libraries on Thursday April 13 as the department’s Library and Information Services unit wrapped up its 10-day autumn school holiday programme.

During this period the City’s various public libraries staged a wide range of activities to keep the youth and learners off the streets and away from mischief. Thursday was the last day of the programme ahead of the reopening of Gauteng schools on Tuesday April 18.

At Poortjie Library in Poortje in Region G, about 60km south of Johannesburg, MMC Sifumba met a group of unemployed youths who were using the Massive Open Online Varsity (MOOV) lab to acquire skills such as web design and PC engineering offered by some of the leading universities and information technology companies in the world in partnership with the City.

Sonti Malindi, a MOOV graduate and facilitator, told the MMC and her entourage that although 325 youths were registered, only 50 attended the online classes regularly. The lab, although it is the smallest in the city, has free Wi-Fi and offers most of the courses available in bigger ones.

Cllr Sifumba was highly impressed with what she saw but called on the facilitators to encourage all those who had enrolled to complete their courses as this would make them more marketable in the jobs arena. “We need to get our graduates also involved in the promotion of the programme. It’s also very important that people complete their training because those certificates are a validation of their achievements,” Cllr Sifumba said.

On the other side of the library, 30 children had just finished their Easter egg hunt. Three of them serenaded the visitors, with 12-year-old Lindokuhle Ndimande leading the rendition of acapella hits by Nathi and The Soil.

The MMC also stopped at the nearby Batho Pele Skills Development Centre, where 22 women and two men receive free adult literacy training. She encouraged them to learn other skills, such as computer literacy and beadwork, so they could earn extra income. She also urged them to help police fight drugs.

“For example, nyaope is a huge problem. People know who sells the drugs. Report them to the police. We can’t fight this alone,” she said.

Vlakfontein Library, also in Region G, was a beehive of activity when the MMC arrived. Even the rain and cold weather could not dampen the enthusiasm of the children. They showed off their Easter bunny drawings and the Easter eggs they had spent the whole morning decorating. The 55 children listened attentively as the MMC read the book Easter Parade by Mary Chalmers.

During a question-and-answer session, the children told her they aspired to be doctors, pilots and librarians.

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Last Updated on 18 April 2017