Pages and pages of wise words

first_imgToddlers learn important co-ordination skills while having fun. Colour Africa Proverbs presents words of wisdom from around the continent in a fun and educational way.(Images: Colour Africa) MEDIA CONTACTS • Rosie Campbell  Design for Development  +27 21 434 1126 RELATED ARTICLES • Instilling a love of reading • Gift that keeps on giving • Getting needy kids hooked on books • E-classroom, a fun way to learnSue MustafaColour Africa Proverbs is a unique project that encourages reading and respect for others and the environment among children between the ages of four and eight.Created by a somewhat unlikely source – a team of Cape Town-based graphic designers – the book is a collection of proverbs from around Africa, which are presented along with illustrations, words in different shapes and pictures that children can colour in. Rosie Campbell, Roulé le Roux, Melissa Visser and Amanda Storey run Design for Development, a design studio that has links to community development initiatives, non-profit organisations (NPOs), advocacy groups and the business sector. The company creates logos and branding accessories for prominent NPOs like the Treatment Action Campaign, Equal Education and Hoops4Hope, among others. Colour Africa Proverbs, through its words of wisdom, promotes respect, teamwork and patience in an educational and fun way. The cover is made with 100% recycled materials, to encourage environmental friendliness among the young readers. Each page is dedicated to one proverb, quoted at the top of the page, for which a translation is provided in illustration form below. To further emphasise the proverb’s meaning, the opposite page features a picture that can be coloured in. Next to the original-language saying is the country from where it originated.The books are available at R45 (US$9) each, while a donation copy costs R30 ($3.4), a pack of five costs R210 ($24), and a pack of 10 costs R400 ($45). Books may be ordered via the website. To date over 3 000 copies have been sold.Developing childhood skills“Most colouring books are very commercial,” explained Le Roux, who was responsible for the illustrations. “We wanted to create a book for children and parents that feels familiar and has local content.” Furthermore, the letters of the words in the translation have to be coloured in, a process that Le Roux explains was incorporated to help children pay special attention to their spelling skills.“I specifically wanted the text to be hand drawn and pictorial,” she said, “to show young children how closely drawing, writing and reading are linked. The drawings also encourage children to get ready to read and explore letter-forms while doing a fun activity.”Across the centre spread is a maze-like game that can be played by more than one person, where the winner is the first person to finish a race and reach a set destination. Along the way, players encounter obstacles and in some cases have to rely on each other for help, and in this way are forced to work as a team.Embracing Africa’s diversityThe designers have drawn on wisdom from Kenya, Ethiopia, Namibia, Zimbabwe and South Africa, among other countries. Following the vast interest from Afrikaans speakers, an edition in that language has now been made available. Plans are also in place to translate the book into other languages as well, while also adding more editions to turn the project into a series. The Design for Development team believes that using the different languages in the book also helps children to embrace the cultural diversity of the continent. This way, they not only pay attention to what makes African cultures different, but also how to respect and honour these differences. One isiZulu proverb, says “Ikhotha eyikhothayo” which means “The cow licks the one who licks her”. The saying promotes the value and benefit of helping others when they most need it. International demandFollowing its appearance at the 2012 Design Indaba in March, Colour Africa has attracted international interest and books are being stocked in shops in the US and some countries in Europe. Seeing this as an opportunity to distribute to an even wider audience, the company has recently launched an online shop. Local customers can view a list of stockists on the Design for Development website. One element of their distribution plan is to get as many hard copies to under-resourced crèches and early childhood development centres across the continent as possible. The book is already a feature at crèches across the Western Cape suburbs of Khayamandi and Philippi, while a pupil in another school in Cape Town arranged to donate several copies to a small village in the Eastern Cape.last_img read more

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Ramaphosa in South Sudan for mediation

first_img5 March 2014 Cyril Ramaphosa, the deputy president of South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC), is in South Sudan to start mediation efforts aimed at finding a lasting political solution to the conflict in the war-torn country in northeastern Africa. Ramaphosa, who is also the deputy chairperson of South Africa’s National Planning Commission, was named the country’s special envoy to South Sudan during President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation address last month. He will also visit some countries belonging to the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, an organisation of six eastern African countries focused on drought control and development initiatives. The grouping comprises Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan and Uganda. He is expected to be back in South Africa by next week Thursday. Ramaphosa’s appointment to the post came at the request of President Salva Kiir Mayardit for assistance in bringing about peace and reconciliation in South Sudan. Since fighting broke out in December between the forces of President Kiir and former Deputy President Riek Machar, thousands of people are believed to have been killed and some 870 000 others have fled their homes – 145 000 of them to neighbouring countries and 75 000 to United Nations bases within the country. South Sudan gained its independence from Sudan in 2011. Since the signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement in 2005, South Africa has been actively supporting the African Union’s (AU’s) post-conflict reconstruction and development projects in Sudan, under the umbrella of an AU ministerial committee which South Africa currently chairs. To date, South Africa has trained more than 1 600 officials from the government of South Sudan in areas such as policing, diplomacy, public service, justice, education, mineral affairs and correctional services. Last year, South Africa and Sudan signed an agreement establishing bilateral relations between the two countries. They have also upgraded their diplomatic missions to ambassadorial level. Source: SAnews.gov.zalast_img read more

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WB Governor sends report to Centre

first_imgWest Bengal Governor Keshari Nath Tripathi has sent a report to the Centre on Friday on the ongoing violence in Darjeeling over the demand for a separate Gorkhaland State. “In the report, the Governor said all the stakeholders involved in the Gorkhaland issue should try to resolve the matter through discussion and restore peace in the Darjeeling hills,” sources in the Raj Bhavan told The Hindu.Earlier on Friday, a delegation of three Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) MLAs — Amar Singh Rai, Rohit Sharma and Sarita Rai — met the Governor and apprised him of the situation in Darjeeling. “The GJM delegation also stated that the State government is yet to issue any formal order stating that Bengali will not be made compulsory in the schools in the hills,” sources in the Raj Bhavan said. ‘Outsiders’ work’Addressing the media after the meeting, Mr. Sharma claimed that “those who are indulging in arson in Darjeeling are not GJM members but outsiders.” He also said the delegation had urged the Governor to “inform the Centre about the situation in Darjeeling and the suffering of the locals due to the State government’s stand over the Gorkhaland issue.”The GJM delegation also accused the State Government of “using force to disrupt the peaceful movement for the separate State.” (With PTI inputs)last_img read more

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