Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages (CCPB), the Rotary Club of Newlands (RCN), and members of the Turok family today officially opened the Adult Outreach Centre extension of the Masiphumelele Library.
The construction of a reading room and study area will enable small group teaching, group lectures, and a study space that will be accessible after hours. A supervisor will also ensure there are teaching programmes with a professional administrative service, where qualifications are issued upon programme completion for adult students.
“We are deeply committed to empowering local communities through education, and we are delighted to have had an opportunity to play a role in enhancing the Masiphumelele Library with this dynamic facility for the community,” says Priscilla Urquhart, Public Affairs and Communications Manager at CCPB.
The Masiphumelele Library, managed by the City of Cape Town and built by non-profit organisation MasiCorp in 2003 as a satellite of the Fish Hoek Library, was first expanded in 2009. CCPB, along with Exclusive Books and private donors contributed funds to the project, while the construction was overseen and managed by the RCN. This Outreach centre focused on facilities for young learners and youth.
The late Ben Turok (previously a member of parliament) and his wife Mary were deeply concerned about the educational needs of the Masi adult population. Thorough research by seed donors Ben and Mary Turok, retired Masiphumelele Librarian in charge, Sue Alexander and Head Librarian at Masiphumelele Library, Vuyo Tatana Somlata, identified a need for dedicated premises for an adult reading room and educational outreach centre at Masiphumelele Library.
"Adults never had a space of their own - going through newspapers and magazines, studying, reading always with children running around and no chance of a quiet space. The gap is filled by this new beautiful room," said Sue Alexander.
Rotarians John Winship and Graham Finlayson, evaluated the project to ensure that it was sustainable. The City of Cape Town's Library Department expressed their support for the project and enlisted the help of RCN to design the structure and secure the necessary resources and funding for the expansion of the library.
“Coca-Cola Peninsula Beverages, once again, played a vital role in supporting our efforts in developing the adult educational outreach centre and providing the balance of funding. Together, we have developed this facility that will serve and uplift the community for many years to come,” says John Winship of RCN.
Winship added: “The significant contribution made by the Turok Family strongly shows Ben and Mary’s desire to improve educational opportunities for adults in Masi. The Turok family hope that this will be a useful facility for the residents of Masiphumele – a safe space for reflection, learning and lively debate during these challenging times."