Our Celebrating Partners Project aims to recognise and highlight the work that is done by our implementing partners. We look at how book-sharing has benefited them as an organisation and their beneficiaries. Today we celebrate our partnership with Inceba Trust.

A well known African proverb says “it takes a village to raise a child”. When we reflect on our work at Mikhulu Trust, this proverb rings true. Together with our partner organisations, we aim to ensure nourishing relationships and networks between parents and children in South Africa through the use of book-sharing.

Who is Inceba Trust?

Inceba Trust is an organisation that focuses on Early Childhood Development (ECD). With 139 ECD centres registered with them, their work is spread across the Winelands. Inceba Trust’s nine mentors focus on building relationships with the different ECDs and offer them support in training.

Why book-sharing?

“The word ‘parent-engagement’ is so important in a child’s life” explains Tia Conradie, the ECD manager of Inceba Trust. When looking at the benefits of the book-sharing sessions, Tia acknowledges the fact that anyone can do it. “The programme is suitable for anyone. It’s suitable for grannies, for mothers, for aunts, for grandfathers. It also accommodates any education level.”

With a large part of their focus this year being on parent engagement, it was perfect timing to partner with Mikhulu Trust. The programme has not only benefited their beneficiaries, but their mentors too – as many of them have children of their own.

Puseletso Mofokeng, Mikhulu’s programme manager, has seen Inceba Trust “embrace the programme as their own. It is one of the partners that have really taken the book-sharing into their programme.”

Benefits to Inceba’s beneficiaries

Once Mikhulu Trust had finished training facilitators at Inceba Trust, we had a second training. The second training was for one facilitator to become a coach.

This year, Davine September has been trained as a coach. Her role is to go out to meet the facilitators and see what they do. Davine has seen first-hand the positive impact that book-sharing has had in the communities that she works in. “I had dads coming back with stories, telling me how great the programme is.”

Davine recalls the story of a father who had joined two sessions. At the time he was unemployed, but he recently found a job. He came back to Davine with a story of how he had been telling his colleagues at work about book-sharing and encouraging them to try it. The benefits were not only for his children, but for himself too. “Book-sharing boosted his confidence.”

Some parents have enjoyed the sessions so much, that when their 8 week sessions come to an end they join a different group. “With book-sharing books’ illustrations being based on our communities, people can relate to the pictures in the books. Some of the people in our communities can’t read and write – so the books make it easier for them and gives them a sense of confidence and belonging. Because they don’t have to read, they don’t feel embarrassed. They can just enjoy it and be themselves.”

“At the end of the day a parent’s involvement must be there in a child’s life…It’s a wonderful programme for anyone wanting to take part in it.”

Contact Info

Early Learning Centre, Athlone, Cape Town, 7764

Phone: +27 72 295 5959

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