What we do/Mandela Day Libraries Project


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world” … Nelson Mandela


  • Our children’s poor level of literacy is harming their future
  • More than 16 000 public schools in South Africa do not have libraries
  • Container libraries are an innovative, inexpensive way to address this need
  • The Mandela Day Library Project provides container libraries to deserving primary schools
  • This year we are hoping to place at least 20 new libraries
  • We need your support


How does the project work?

  • The project is part of Mandela Day celebrations nationwide
  • The Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory heads the project
  • Breadline Africa oversees the work of converting the containers
  • Soul Buddyz identifies the  schools with active Soul Buddyz Clubs
  • Corporates provide financial support, sponsorship of books and employee volunteers 
  • Literacy organisations, book donation agencies and publishers provide books, educational equipment and materials


Who does the project benefit?

  • Container libraries are installed at deserving primary schools throughout South Africa
  • Between 800-1000 learners will benefit from the new library in each school
  • Soul Buddyz Club members at the schools assist with the maintenance and use of the container library
  • Literacy NGOs and other organisations help instill a culture of reading amongst children

How can you help?

  • Pledge your support for the Mandela Day Library Project
  • Sponsor a library branded with your own company logo
  • A 12-metre container library costs between R120 000 to R160 000 to install; other larger options are available. Please click here to view the Container Library plan.
  • Offer equipment, books or other educational materials
  • ‘Adopt’ a school and raise funds among staff
  • Ask your staff to participate in painting and furnishing the library
  • All supporters receive a Section 18a tax exemption certificate

To find out more and get involved, please contact Tim Smith, Director of Breadline Africa (director@breadlineafrica.org.za; 021-4180322) 

Or Yase Godlo, Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory (Yase@nelsonmandela.org; 011-547 5600)




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