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Education And Training

Coronation and Ladles of Love partner to boost feeding and reading in ECDs across SA

In preparation for World Book Day (23 April), NPO Ladles of Love and Coronation are again partnering to boost literacy and food security at under-resourced early childhood development (ECD) centres around the country – and the South African public is invited to join the cause to reach the goal of helping more than 6,000 children in need.

In South Africa, there is a clear link between poor reading ability of school-going children and hunger, as food-insecure children struggle more with concentration and school attendance.

The ‘Love Books’ campaign started in March and will continue to fill tummies and provide storybooks for children at 57 ECD centres in the Western Cape, Northern Cape and Gauteng, culminating in special events in Cape Town and Johannesburg next week in celebration of World Book Day.

The Cape Town event takes place on 23 April 2024 in Khayelitsha – Little Star Educare ECD and kick starts at 10.15am, while the Johannesburg event will take place on 18 April 2024 at the Alexandra ECD kick starting at 10am. Coronation is the headline sponsor for this initiative, but several other organisations are also involved, including The Bookery, Leeu Collection, Hyve Group and the SA Canada Chamber of Commerce.

How you can help, South Africa

“Anyone who would like to donate will help us provide food for two healthy meals a day to little children living in impoverished communities, and gift them books to assist in their growth and enable them be the best they can be,” says Danny Diliberto, founder and managing director of Ladles of Love.
Those who wish to donate can feed a child and give a book to read for R250 per month. Donors can set up single, recurring or annual donations by visiting: ladlesoflove.org.za/donate/#sponsorachild

There are three donation options. Find more info on ladlesoflove.org.za/

Why Coronation is getting involved

According to the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) of 2021, 81% of Grade 4 learners tested in South Africa cannot read for meaning in any of the 11 official languages or answer straight-forward comprehension questions. This is an increase from the previous 78% from 2016. In addition, almost half of South Africa is food insecure, and the impact of hunger is very apparent in the ECD sector.

“At Coronation, we recognise the undeniable correlation between hunger and learning barriers among children and this is why we are once again partnering with the wonderful organisation Ladles of Love to give the double gift of feeding and reading to young children who need support,” says Wisahl Ganief, Coronation Group head of marketing.

Coronation is a long-standing advocate for both early childhood development and food security. “We firmly believe that by investing in these interconnected issues, we can make a positive impact on the educational landscape in South Africa. We are because of our communities, and it is our duty to extend a helping hand where it’s needed most,” says Ganief.

“We actively support the ECD sector through learner and teacher support programmes, by way of NPO partnerships. Our NPOs are doing incredible work in our communities and need our support. Ladles of Love is one such NPO that does incredible work in three provinces. We’ve had a years-long partnership with Ladles of Love and will be supporting their work for years to come. We invite other businesses and the public to join us as the impact is in children’s lives is real and tangible.”

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