LIASA 2021 - Thembi Mathenjwa — A Library Changemaker and Creative Community Collaborator

Centurion, October 18, 2021 — Countrywide, the pandemic forced libraries and librarians into new ways of working, pushing them to find ways of creatively engaging with their communities. For 2021, Sabinet is proud to highlight one of these individuals, 2021 LIASA’s Library Changemaker Awardee: Thembi Florence Mathenjwa. At Sabinet, acting in the interest of change is at the core of what we do and, founded by South African Libraries all the way back in 1983, we have spent nearly four decades finding creative and innovative ways of providing a library network and resource-sharing facilities to users around the country.  
During the Covid-19 pandemic, Ms Mathenjwa went above and beyond the call of duty in her role as librarian. Hailing from New Ermelo Primary School where she works as a teacher-librarian, Ms Mathenjwa refers to her place of work as ‘our’ library, a shared space where she’s worked hard to ensure its continued availability to learners and teachers alike. In the past she has been recognised for her hard work, having received the Da Vinci Huis - IASL Award - South Africa for 2020, and here we are once again honouring her for her passion and innovation.
As the pandemic reared its ugly head, Ms Mathenjwa strived to do everything she could to help the library ‘keep up’, addressing challenges as they arose. As a teacher-librarian, she sought to adapt traditional annual programmes in line with the ‘new normal’ and, through various school excursions, was able to do just that. In celebration of Read Aloud Day and South African Library Week, she and her learners travelled to their local radio station – Ligwa FM – where learners were able to read stories live to the entire neighbourhood. During Mandela Month, another visit to Ligwa FM saw the children once again sharing stories with their wider community. 
While visiting Croatia as part of the International Association for School Librarianship (IASL) conference, Ms Mathenjwa learnt about the process of ‘book tasting’ — a way of exposing learners to different genres and authors – all to find books that suit their tastes and to encourage reading in general. And this tasting was something she was eager to implement back home – hosting multiple events where learners (and even her fellow teachers) could come and sample new books.
Encouraging others to delve further into the world of literacy is just one aspect of Ms Mathenjwa’s passionate approach to the work she does. Beyond the reading, Ms Mathenjwa has also formed a number of book clubs, providing learners with a platform where they can write, share and ultimately spread their stories.
Taking place on 17 September 2021 as part of National Literacy Month proceedings, Ms Mathenjwa was tasked with introducing the Nal’ibali newspaper’s story supplement to the local community at an event organised by Nal’ibali and Ligwa FM in conjunction with the Ermelo Post Office. Here she spoke about the importance of communication and information-sharing in the community while also highlighting the importance of literacy. Using postcards provided by Nal’iBali, learners were given the chance to write messages to friends and family which the post office then delivered for free — a perfect opportunity for the learners to display their creative writing skills. At Sabinet, our goal has always been to facilitate access to information for our users and seeing Thembi acting as an ambassador, truly embodying this value for her learners and the community at large, is hugely inspiring.
An opportunistic innovator whose mind is constantly on her ‘kids’, Ms Mathenjwa actively seeks out donors who might be willing to assist the learners at her primary school. Donations of backpacks, various school stationery, clothing items and lunch bags go a long way to help those learners in need. However, keeping the wider community in mind and being acutely aware that Covid-19 led to family members losing jobs, Ms Mathenjwa arranged food parcels to help supplement learners’ diets, ensuring that they were still getting healthy food during the pandemic.
Sabinet applauds Thembi’s commitment to keeping things fresh for the children and for her can-do attitude when it comes to finding exciting ways of encouraging them into lives enriched by libraries and learning.

  • LIASA 2021 - Thembi Mathenjwa — A Library Changemaker and Creative Community Collaborator

    LIASA 2021 - Thembi Mathenjwa — A Library Changemaker and Creative Community Collaborator Centurion, October 18, 2021 — Countrywide, the pandemic forced libraries and librarians into new ways of working, pushing them to find ways of creatively engaging with their communities. For 2021,

    Read More
  • Keep track on the future of the country’s cannabis industry

    Keep track on the future of the country’s cannabis industry CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 8 September 2021. On 26 August 2021, South African government unveiled its master plan for the future of the country’s cannabis industry, following two years of

    Read More
  • Sabinet introduces custom library app CapiraMobile

    Sabinet introduces custom library app CapiraMobile CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 30 August 2021. Sabinet is pleased to introduce an exciting addition to their library solutions offering that will significantly increase the impact and engagement of libraries. Libraries today are under

    Read More
  • Policy Commons – The what and the why

    Policy Commons – The what and the why Policy Commons – The what and the why CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 12 August 2021. The original meaning of the term ‘commons’ comes from the way communities managed land that was held ‘in common’

    Read More
  • Sabinet’s Publishing Solutions: Manage peer review with PowerReview and manage APC’s with SciPris

    Sabinet’s Publishing Solutions: Manage peer review with PowerReview and manage APC’s with SciPris CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 29 July 2021. With online publishing becoming the new normal for many publishers, the sheer number of services available on the market can

    Read More
  • Unlock new avenues for growth through digitisation

    Unlock new avenues for growth through digitisation CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 24 June 2021. As the third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic washes over our country, businesses must continue to look for new ways of working which will unlock value

    Read More
  • A partnership to power up access to policy materials

    A partnership to power up access to policy materials CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 22 June 2021.At Sabinet, we’re passionate about providing intuitive solutions which add value for our customers and stakeholders, allowing them to close the gap between searching and

    Read More
  • Increase resilience through digitisation

    Increase resilience through digitisation. CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 31 March 2021.COVID-19 has presented one of the most formidable challenges to government, businesses, and society. As a result, agile solutions are important to establish sustainability for the future challenges to come

    Read More
  • Make sound legal decisions, informed by the experience of the past.

    Make sound legal decisions, informed by the experience of the past. CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 18 March 2021. Those entrusted with rendering justice on any level have a responsibility to ensure that they stay abreast of the latest developments in

    Read More
  • Sabinet African Journals: A powerful, new platform for a fast-growing collection.

    Sabinet African Journals: A powerful, new platform for a fast-growing collection. CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 9 March 2021. Sabinet is pleased to announce the migration of Sabinet African Journals (www.journals.co.za) to a new powerful technology platform. With this move to

    Read More
  • With alcohol restrictions on the cards, are South Africans considering going Green?

    With alcohol restrictions on the cards, are South Africans considering going Green? CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 1 February 2021. Over the past few months, South African government restrictions regarding the purchase and consumption of alcohol have fluctuated. Alcohol was placed

    Read More
  • Sabinet Judgments — a well-rounded view of reported and unreported - supplemented by an advanced system to enable users to timeously and cost effectively find the information they require.

    Sabinet Judgments — a well-rounded view of reported and unreported judgments - supplemented by an advanced system to enable users to timeously and cost effectively find the information they require. CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 18 November 2020. Sabinet, one of the most

    Read More
  • Employment Equity Amendment Bill set to send ripples throughout South Africa’s business sectors (2)

    Employment Equity Amendment Bill set to send ripples throughout South Africa’s business sectors The closing date for comments on the Employment Equity Amendment Bill is set for this Friday, 19 February. The Bill has been greeted with varying degrees of

    Read More
  • New Restaurant Pay Rules

    New Restaurant Pay Rules CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 28 January 2021. While the pandemic has brought its fair share of challenges to each one of us, the food services industry has felt its effects more gravely than most. Lockdowns have

    Read More
  • GAUTENG LOOKS TO TOWNSHIPS TO HELP BOOST THE ECONOMY AND CREATE JOBS FOR CITIZENS

    GAUTENG LOOKS TO TOWNSHIPS TO HELP BOOST THE ECONOMY AND CREATE JOBS FOR CITIZENS CENTURION Pretoria, South Africa, 14 October 2020. The Gauteng Provincial Government has released the Gauteng Township Economic Development Bill for public comment — new legislation which aims

    Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7

Be the first to know!

Want the latest on Sabinet?

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER