23.12.2010 - UNESCO Office in Harare

UNESCO Commemorates the International Literacy Day in Botswana

UNESCO commemorated this year’s International Literacy Day observed on 11 September 2010 at the village Kang at Matsha Non-Formal Education Centre in Botswana.

The Centre is located in the Kgalagadi Desert about 700 km away from the capital, Gaborone.

As per tradition in Botswana, the commemoration got an opening speech from the Assistant Minister for Education, Honourable Keletso Rakhudu, was preceded with the Learners’ Week from 6 – 10 September 2010 and culminated into the International Literacy Day 2010 on the 11 September 2010 under the theme “Literacy and Empowerment”.

The Department of Out of School Education and Training (DOSET) spearheaded the commemoration preparations with the support of the general community, local authorities and heads of Department from both Central and Local Government. The Learners’ Week activities included; Reading Practice – characterized by learners’ visit to the libraries; Exposure to basic ICT skills – to enable them to carry out simple tasks like typing, sending text messages from mobile phones and accessing information via internet. There were also educational excursions – comprising of site visits to small scale income generating projects like a thriving gardening project at Tshane Prisons and a newly established poultry farm wholly owned by a young Motswana.

The national Police gave an address to clarify the relationship between literacy and law and the fact that ignorance cannot be used as an excuse in a court of law. Address by Medical Practitioners demonstrated how literacy empowers people to make informed choices on matters of health while a presentation by bankers and postal personnel gave lessons on the value of literacy in assisting people to access and enjoy services offered by the bank and postal sectors.

Song and dance, learner testimonies, and awards of certificates and prices to learners, are some of the activities that characterized the event.

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