SA kids keen to read but can't afford books

2013-03-13 11:03

Johannesburg - South African children are keen readers, they just cannot afford books, a survey has found.

"It was found that most young South Africans enjoy reading, and want to read more, but are held back by the cost and availability of books," said market research company Pondering Panda's spokesperson Shirley Wakefield.

She said the government should support the youth by making it easier to access books.

"Two things it can do right now are expand the library system, and make books VAT-exempt, so that they become more affordable for young people... 88% [of people] said they would definitely buy more books if they cost less."

Over 12 000 people, between 13 and 34, were surveyed across the country.

The survey found that more than one in every four people did not have easy access to a library.

Among those who read, 33% borrowed books from others, 30% bought books, 28% obtained them from libraries, and 9% through other means.

Young black South Africans were found to be the most enthusiastic readers with 74% claiming to be reading a book, compared to 65% of whites and 55% of coloureds and Indians.

  • koos.vandermerwe.1042 - 2013-03-13 11:22

    Just ironic that when the youths get to varsity, an astounding number of them can't read or write properly!

      JanGrimbeek - 2013-03-13 11:45

      And the rest of them nothing at all !

      ohbizz.chabata - 2013-03-13 15:29

      The youth can't afford books. All their money goes to Video games and BlackBerries

  • angelanair3 - 2013-03-13 11:33

    Well if we had less corruption? There would be money enough for millions of books! Hey Angie, less nepotism and tenderpreneurs! Buy the damn books for kids to become more intelligent! And Pravin - stop dishing out our taxmoney to thieves - rather give it to those who need it.........

  • Gerhard Uys - 2013-03-13 11:37

    Books is useless. No one don't need to right or reed. Grammar are a man- maid thing and are not essentially for surviving. What good had done reading? I done know reeding and i can right like this so point proved.

      JanGrimbeek - 2013-03-13 11:44

      Hahahahaha !

  • Themba Khumalo - 2013-03-13 11:39

    I have three sons, 17, 13 and 2. I literally have to use threat, extortion and bribes to get them to read. Its hard to prise them away from electronic games, cellphones, TV and music. Their friends arent much different. I dont know where Pondering Panda did their survey, but I think their resultant conclusions must be taken with a shovelfull of rock salt.

      Mpumelelo Memorial Trust Fund - 2013-03-13 11:46

      I am so glad you are exposing yourself for buying your kids the most expensive gadgets instead of books and you wonder why we are not a reading enthuiastic nation? I am not judging you on how to use your money, its your money afterall, I'm just stating the obvious or is it the not so obvious?

      JanGrimbeek - 2013-03-13 11:49

      Pondering Panda did their survey at the "anc yoof leek" offices. remember they are all kids belonging to that orgy

  • Pagani Zonda - 2013-03-13 11:54

    Thats a total lie. S.A kids R keen to have more sex , More club and tavern hopping, more booze , and more of the crazy things not close to reading. what lie..

      marc.klynhans - 2013-03-13 12:09

      Well said.

  • Sibusiso Shane Mavimbela - 2013-03-13 12:04

    It doesn't have to be books only there's a whole lot of reading material out there. Typical example would be news24 I don't have to waste money to buy a news paper unless of course I want that feel of a newspaper. There's no excuse really, read something even the comments here on news24 are very helpful. You get to see how dumb we are & still racist as a nation. I mean some white people in this platform still think that every Black South African votes for ANC by default, well some of us are just as gatvol with ANC.

      marc.klynhans - 2013-03-13 12:22

      Some whites. But I think very few. Just have to say something about the irony in your post, though... "There's no excuse really, read something even the comments here on news24 are very helpful. You get to see how dumb we are & still racist as a nation." Immediately followed by: "Some white people in this platform..." See, you can't complain about racism and then make a racist comment. Racism doesn't stop when "he" or "she" "stops" (sorry for all the "'s). Racism stops when "I" stop. I believe I speak for very many (maybe all?) white people when I say that I wish the government would educate the people of South Africa and not use politics for personal gain. It's got nothing to do with black or white. My tax money is not being spent the way I want it to, and this is why I don't vote for ANC - not because "they're black". So when I (or a white person) comment on ANC and government it's not racism, it's because I see what's happening to this glorious country.

  • marc.klynhans - 2013-03-13 12:07

    Read the news paper! That's what we did.

  • AgSies Man - 2013-03-13 12:14

    Buy second hand books from charity shops - SPCA, Red Cross, etc. I find excellent value and can buy up to 7 books with R100. Borrowing books from each other is another option.

  • lacrimosewolf - 2013-03-13 13:41

    Remove VAT from books!

  • Sibusiso Shane Mavimbela - 2013-03-13 15:02

    @Marc. It's got everything to do with black & white. My tax money is not being spent the way I want just as with many South Africans b&w. if you want to criticize the ANC you're well within your democratic right to do so. I still maintain that some white people in this platform think that every black South African votes for the ANC. I don't see how my statement is racist, but maybe racism or should I say apartheid has a lot to do with the way this country votes. On a positive note there's a lot of young people like myself who are going to change this country with their votes. So if you're a disgruntled 50 something year old South African, don't despair change is coming sooner than you think. The youth, educated that is will change things just like they did in 76.

      marc.klynhans - 2013-03-13 16:47

      Awesome. And no, I'm not a disgruntled 50YO. lol. Don't get me wrong - I'm one of the thumbs up on your previous post. But by reading it, you can see why someone would think it's racist? In other words, don't post something if it may be taken as racist by a non-racist, educated, neutral person.

  • skiapas - 2013-03-13 20:43

    ...can people in africa read ?

  • Dave Coventry - 2013-03-14 06:47

    Books are subject to VAT in South Africa, in contrast to the rest of the world where more enlightened Governments might want to encourage their citizens to read. Our Government here is more interested in promoting ignorance as a way of ensuring loyalty.

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