Revamped Library for Shea O’Connor


Antonia Mkhabela, acting principle of Shea O’Connor Combined School at the library opening. Photo by Nkululeko Mdladla

‘Nothing can replace a book in building a nation’ said Antonia Mkhabela the acting principal of Shea O’Connor Combined School at the Opening Ceremony of their school library recently.

Nationally, only 10% of schools have functional libraries, despite the fact that libraries are one of the key components to ensure a literate population in the future. Shea O’Connor in Nottingham Road now has a revamped, well stocked and colourful school library.

The Midlands Meander Association Education Project (MMAEP) has been the driving force behind this library and has been working with the school, teachers, learners and volunteer community librarians since January 2013 to ensure that the library is fully functional. During the ceremony, Ntombi Mshengu from the Education Library Information Technology Service (ELITS), said they really appreciate the work MMAEP does in local schools. Jim Taylor, director of Environmental Education at WESSA, The Wildlife Environmental Society of South Africa, made a special appeal to the learners in an emotive speech – “The three pillars of strength for a successful professional life are good reading, good writing and speaking well, your school library is a valuable asset in paving the way towards a life as a professional young adult”. After the formalities were over, the whole school and guests gathered outside to enjoy a rousing display of Zulu dancing from the school’s award winning troupe. It was a great start of an exciting journey for readers and writers at this school.

For further information about the Midlands Meander Association Education Project, a flagship project of N3TC, please visit or check out our Facebook page.