Latest Oaky book donated to Eisleben Primary pupils

Grade 3 pupil Luke Stemmet receives a book from Read to Rise programme manager Roscoe Williams. Looking back are Olwethu Bunga and Abduraghmaan Haywood.

Grade 3 pupils at Eisleben Primary School, in Rocklands, were the latest recipients of the new book in the Oaky series.

Oaky is an acorn on a journey to grow into a big oak tree, whose story is told in a series of picture books, distributed for free to pupils at Mitchell’s Plain primary schools by literacy non-profit organisation Read to Rise.

The organisation turns nine in September and this “Oaky in the playground”, the eighth book in the series, was published last year by author Athol Williams, a former Westridge High School pupil, now a philanthropist and holder of various degrees from five of the top universities in the world.

He was inspired by his niece Kirsten Williams, 9, who wrote the story on pages for a Grade 2 school task, last year.

Her father Roscoe Williams, who is the programme manager for Read to Rise, distributed 350 books at the Rocklands school, to pupils in Grades 2 and 3 last week.

Grade 3 pupils read the new Oaky book together.

The organisation’s employees visit schools, talk to pupils about the moral of the story and how to take care of their books.

They try instil book pride, inspire the pupils to read, dream and grow into responsible citizens.

The group gives books to pupils from Grade 1 to Grade 3 ensuring that the pupils read to rise above their circumstances.

Mr Williams said they are reliant on sponsors to cover the costs of the books and to distribute them to pupils in Mitchell’s Plain for free. The pupils get to take the books home and share them with their families. They have also distributed books in Soweto and are now in kwaZulu-Natal.

“It is important to teach the children book ownership and for them to take lessons from these stories,” he said.

Grade 3 pupil Ubaid Jordaan writes his name in his new Oaky book.

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