Library up and running

2020-02-11 06:00
Roche Henson, Christopher Jonkers and Kaylin Kotze read at the library every day.PHOTOS: RACINE EDWARDES

Roche Henson, Christopher Jonkers and Kaylin Kotze read at the library every day.PHOTOS: RACINE EDWARDES

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Many say books allow you to escape your everyday life and explore new worlds.

The Omegaview Community Project’s backyard library was that place of escape for many children in Lavender Hill until it was forced to close down temporarily last year.

The library is run out of a home belonging to John Nicholson and his family.

Renovations to restore the library to its former glory began soon after a section of the house’s roof collapsed.

Thanks to a donation, the library, located at 1 Sunflower Road, could again open its doors at the beginning of this year.

“We got a donation of bricks, cement, sand – everything you need to build.A company bought us 1000 bricks which are going to be used to build a wall at the front. Once we’re done with that, it will open up the space in here for the kids.”

So far the renovations have allowed Nicholson and his family to open a section of their garage for children to read after school. They have set out desks and chairs, enabling the children to immerse themselves in books in a comfortable setting.

“Every day at 13:30 I start to clean the library, to get it ready for them,” he says.

His wife, Gail, adds: “We told them it’s not done yet but they just can’t wait to come back and read.”

The library draws up to 40 children each day. With so many children making their way to the Nicholson household every day, there aren’t enough seats for everyone and some children are forced to use bricks as chairs.

Donations of chairs, desks, bookshelves and office equipment are desperately needed to allow more children to flourish.

“Chrissy is so clever! He is only in Grade 4 but he helps the Grade 6 children with their reading,” says Gail.

Walking into the library, a young boy greets the family and hands over a R1 donation.

“I keep all these R1 and 50c so that, at the end of the year, we can take the children on an outing. We put them on a bus and take them out to Simon’s Town. One year we took them to Sea Point. They loved seeing all the new sights.”

  • To assist the library, call John on 072 313 6358.

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