A father figure’s interest in his child’s education – which is the time spent on their homework and schooling – is vital in determining his or her academic achievements. It can also outweigh the negative impact of racism and poverty in a young person’s life. Further, the amount of time a father figure spends reading with his children is one of the best ways of predicting how well the children will read and write in the future.
With the South African education system currently in crisis, and to coincide with Father’s Day, Nal’ibali – the national reading-for-enjoyment-campaign – is highlighting the positive impact men and father figures in general, can have on the children in their lives this June. Keep an eye out on our social media platforms for more details.
The campaign will be outlining what fathers and other male role models can do to support their children’s literacy and other school learning while at home in the following ways:
- A free public WhatsApp webinar on Thursday 18 June at 3 p.m. with special guests, Thulani Velebayi – Child Rights and Positive Parenting Regional Trainer from Sonke Gender Justice, and children’s literacy expert and education advocate, Malusi Ntoyapi. Please click on the following link to join the webinar. https://chat.whatsapp.com/B9BBVqiNeAVDsbo1cgZKoO
- A fun and informal poster reminding men of the powerful role they can play available for free download from the Nal’ibali website.
- A series of public service announcement videos on Nal’ibali’s social media platforms featuring messages from recognised male role models including hip-hop artist, teacher and counsellor, Emile Jansen; self-made Soweto-based graphic novelist, Siya Masuku; well-known businessman and founder of Silulo, Luvuyo Rani; and writer and literacy activist Bertie Saal.
- A short online drive inviting men and fathers all over South Africa to endorse family literacy by sharing videos of themselves encouraging dads to read with their children and to stay involved with their child’s education. Please tag Nal’ibali on your posts.
However, the key message that Nal’ibali hopes to deliver to fathers and father-figures this June is that regardless of their family’s financial or social status, children everywhere can easily be given a powerful academic boost simply by being read to and having stories shared with them. It should also provide some comfort, that in this time of uncertainty there are some activities that are easy to do, and that make a positive impact. And small children emulate what their parents do!
For more information about the Nal’ibali campaign, or to access children’s stories in a range of SA languages, visit www.nalibali.org, or send the word ‘stories’ to 060 044 2254. You can also find Nal’ibali on Facebook and Twitter: @nalibaliSA.