In an effort to provide skills and uplift the community through gardening, Firwood Road Library in Effingham, eThekwini Municipal Libraries, Parks, Recreation and Culture, and Durban UNESCO City of Literature held a Sustainable Living Programme, recently.
Librarian, Nosipho Sobisi, said the staff came up with the initiative of holding the Sustainable Living Programme under the theme of gardening, with the vision of providing a skill to the community especially as COVID-19 has closed down businesses and taken away thousands of jobs from people.
“We invited experts from different fields within the greening and gardening fields. My guests really enjoyed the programme because they gained knowledge on how to plant, how to grow vegetables and fruits, and how to take care, maintain and sustain their gardens,” she explained.
Sobisi said the programme, which was the first of many to follow, fell in line with the government initiative, ‘One Home, One Garden.’
She added that the programme also encouraged residents and the public to visit the library. “As a library, we wanted to indicate to the public that we have books. People tend to shy away from books but after this programme, they will know that to enhance their knowledge, they need to utilise our books,” she added.
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Resident, Katie Griffiths, said the programme was highly beneficial. “It taught us how to grow vegetables and fruits, which will in turn help to provide for our children and families,” she said.
Speaking on the importance and relevance of libraries in a world dominated by social media, Sobisi said that books don’t go out of fashion.
“A traditional library plays a vital role in everyone’s lives, regardless of age. We always encourage, especially the kids, to read. Social media has taken over but are we learning anything from social media. In the library, we keep current newspapers and books, and what’s on social media just trends and then fades away. A book does not go out of fashion. We visit schools and conduct orientation programmes with pupils to encourage them to visit the library and read with us,” Sobisi said.
The library holds various programmes throughout the year.
Currently, a kiddies programme is running at the library. Firwood Road Library is opened from Mondays to Fridays- 9am to 4:30pm, and on Saturdays- 8:30am to 12:30pm. Sundays and public holidays, the library is closed.