Margaret von Klemperer has written an article in the Witness highlighting the work done by FunDza, an organisation that is trying to provide a practical solution to the problem of literacy in South Africa – a pertinent task amidst a swathe of “hand-wringing” commentary on the topic.
FunDza takes books targeted at young black readers and makes them available to download on the mobile social network, Mxit. Nobody Will Ever Kill Me, written by the young Mbu Maloni, has already proved a hit on the network with enthusiastic response from readers (read an extract here):
Hand-wringing about how kids don’t read, won’t read — even can’t read — is not going to solve South Africa’s literacy problem. However, an organisation called FunDza has come up with a possible solution that is cool and interactive, and designed to appeal to local youngsters, particularly those who neither have access to books nor the money to buy them.
FunDza takes books, including Mbu Maloni’s Nobody Will Ever Kill Me (reviewed above) and makes them accessible on its Mobi site, where kids can download them on MXit. And if reading isn’t cool, MXit is.
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