Biblionef is an NPC (Non-Profit Company) that donates new storybooks to children attending schools and organisations with an educational focus. The majority of our books are locally produced and available in all eleven languages to ensure that South African children can relate to them. These books support endeavours to improve literacy levels, establish a reading culture, and help create the right circumstances to foster a love of reading and respect for the written word. Our Vision is to create lifelong readers who are good citizens, can read and think for themselves, resulting in a society where everyone is literate, has access to education and read both for pleasure and necessity. Our Mission is to make books available for all children (ages 3 – 18) in all the official languages for reading pleasure and for education, and in this way to lay the foundation for children to make good decisions through critical thinking and live balanced and productive lives.

Ensuring that our beneficiaries receive appropriate storybooks is essential. When sourcing storybooks for our programmes, we look for:

● African content and illustrations: The stories' settings and characters must be relatable to the South African child.
● Local languages: We donate books in all eleven official languages. We encourage and advocate for children to be proud of their mother tongue, heritage and culture.
● New books: Most children who acquire our books have never seen, felt or held and smelt a new book, let alone one in their mother tongue. For this reason, the books we donate are always new. We strongly believe that a book is a gift; every child deserves to enjoy the pleasure of having new books that are neat and clean and add to their sense of touch and smell.

Achievements between 1998 and 2020:

 Donated 1 845 433 new storybooks
 Benefited 11 691 children's organisations
 Reached 5 176 089 children
 Assisted over 60 schools and communities with informal libraries, which included shelves, cupboards, and containers
 Commissioned the translations and publication or reprints of 91 titles in one or more of South Africa eleven official languages


Donations Programme
Our book providing service is free; we buy books with funds raised from our donors and through our sustainability efforts. Many requests are received weekly from children's organisations asking for books. We assess the applications according to the organisation's needs, such as; the number of children, languages used, and library access. Appropriate books are selected from our available book stock or purchased, packed and dispatched to the recipient organisation, who acknowledges receipt. Our beneficiaries are encouraged to carry out a community project as a way of paying it forward for having received books for free. For instance, this could be cleaning the playground or school grounds, reading to children at a local creche or singing for the elderly.

Training and Mentorship Sessions
When funding allows, we provide training and mentoring sessions to Foundation Phase teachers. We always work with our donors to realise these projects. Our Project Manager offers practical examples of how Foundation Phase teachers can incorporate storybooks into their lesson plans through a series of in-depth workshops and in-class mentoring sessions. The current curriculum makes provision for regular
storytelling, but we have discovered that some teachers need help in using storybooks to supplement and support their teaching. Our training assists in making storytelling more prevalent in the classroom and encourages reading and writing for meaning amongst the learners.

Setting up Libraries
We recognise that many schools do not have a place to store their books to make them readily available for children. In these cases, we raise funds to supply shelving or cupboards. Depending on the available space, we will either provide schools with corner classroom libraries (a shelf or roller box containing books in each classroom), a start-up library (two or more shelves and books in a classroom) or a fully functional library (shelving, books, bookends, library software, colour coding stickers, and date stamps). We have also designed a display box that we provide to our beneficiaries with their donation of books. Teachers can easily put together the box and then use it to display their donation of books.

Supporting Early Childhood Development (ECDs) Centres
Realising how important the early years are to a child's development, Biblionef extends its book donations to ECD Centres. Biblionef has been donating educational resources to ECD Centres for the last 19 years, with the help of several donors. We donate at least 35 storybooks and some educational toys, puzzles and posters to support the children's cognitive development and the development of their fine
motor skills. We put the resources in a clear roller box to allow for easy storage by the practitioner.

We also work with Family Community Motivator (FCM) Programmes. The FCM Programmes were initiated in response to the many preschool children not attending an ECD Centre. The FCMs support and stimulate the child in their home and at the same time reach the primary caregivers by equipping them with parenting skills, growing their awareness and giving guidance according to their needs. For the FCM Programmes, we provide them with a book bag containing storybooks and educational toys, puzzles and posters. The FCM practitioner can easily carry the book bags from home to home.

Contact Person

Sunitha Amod
+27 21 531 0447

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