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Ladles of Love aims to nourish learners’ bodies and minds with its ‘Love Books’ campaign

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By Ragheema Mclean

The results of the 2023 Background Report for the 2030 Reading Panel show that the country is regressing in the fundamental unit of education: literacy.

Basic literacy among children in South Africa is an ongoing concern, particularly for those grappling with socio-economic challenges such as poverty and hunger.

Amid this crisis, the non-profit organisation Ladles of Love is working to fill the tummies of hungry children while making them fall in love with books again this February.

The Love Books campaign is ingeniously merging feeding with reading by raising funds to ensure that 5,185 young children in 47 Early Childhood Development Centres across the Western Cape, Northern Cape, and Gauteng have access to both food and books in 2024.

Speaking on VOC Breakfast on Thursday, the Founder of Ladles of Love, Danny Diliberto, emphasized the importance of providing learners with both a strong educational foundation and nurturing a love for learning from an early age.

“Every year, at the beginning of the school year, we do something special for our children, and this year we decided to give them a book because education is so crucial.”

Diliberto stressed the critical link between nutrition and education, stating, “We all agree that we must educate our children, but many of these kids don’t have food at home, and you can’t effectively educate a hungry child. Therefore, education must be coupled with a nutritional plan.”

“We are having a very positive response because they want to help with education, and they want to look after our children.”

Furthermore, he also highlighted the urgency of addressing poverty and inequality in the country, stressing the need for collective action to bring about meaningful change.

For every R250 donated to Love Books, Ladles of Love will sponsor a child in need with two meals a day and a book to read. Donors also have the option to make this a monthly contribution, ensuring a child is fed for the entire year and has access to reading materials.

To learn more about the Love Books campaign and how to contribute, visit or follow Ladles of Love on Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn.

VOC News

Photo: Pixabay

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