The Mandela family at South Africa House, London August 15th 2018

Mandela family reading the book image
The children reading to the audience…

On August 15th, the SmithMartin Partnership team were invited to a book launch and family event at South Africa House, Trafalgar Square London.

There were sandwiches and cakes, balloons and celebrations as the Mandela family led us in storytelling and reflection about Nelson Mandela’s life and hardships, eventually securing the end of apartheid in South Africa in 1994.

Zindzi Mandela, who is currently serving as her country’s ambassador to Denmark is  the youngest daughter of Nelson and Winnie. She wanted to write a book so children could understand on their own terms about her father Nelson Mandela.

Grandad Mandela - cover image and web link
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Grandad Mandela is written by Zindzi and two of her grandchildren, Zazi and Ziwelene, illustrated by Sean Qualls and published by Lincoln Children’s Books.

Zindzi had grown up in Soweto and when she was 18 months old her father, Nelson was sent to prison, and her mother, Winnie, was banished to the Free State, taking Zindzi with her. There was no schooling and she only had chance to finish her education when she was sent to Swaziland. In 1985 she gained a BA in Law at the University of Cape Town, In February 1985, she had read out Nelson’s refusal for a conditional release from prison by P.W.Botha.

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…with free delivery

Zindzi also accompanied her father at his inauguration as President and was First Lady following Winnie and Nelson’s divorce.

An incredible woman, she has a special place in history during those turbulent and impossible times in South Africa. Unbelievable now, that apartheid could have ever happened, working in a multi-cultural city like London…there is so much we take for granted.

Zindzi spoke about the need to write this book so children can discover on their own terms about apartheid and the struggle to overcome it. She said children should get answers to the questions they have. The work of Nelson Mandela in ending apartheid is now legendary and his strength and stalwartness in the pursuit of peace and forgiveness should be shared across the world.

“For many years as black South Africans we were not allowed to have a voice, but now we have a voice. And we won’t stop talking! And we won’t stop writing!”

The video below gives some of the words from Zindzi.

Thembi Tambo, the High Commissioner for South Africa in London, welcomed the family and explained that Zindzi had gone through a difficult childhood when Nelson Mandela was in prison for 27 years.

Thembi Tambo explained also about the life experiences of Zindzi and how she has must have hidden away any anger and fears, remaining strong in her belief and in continuing her work. She said it was difficult to imagine a better way in which to allow children to access the information than through this book. “There are many stories but some are just too hard to share”.

The Mandela Legacy organisation helped in the promotion of the book, and in organising this event, to support those who wish to have a voice and create a platform for sustainable development.

The children helped to read Grandad Mandela and were also asked some questions about human rights. One of the answers was, “You can’t judge children by how we look and feel. We are all fine just as we are”.

A stunning answer from an eight year old. The book Grandad Mandela, the work of Nelson Mandela and now his family shows what can happen to make changes for the better and the enormous courage and work needed to make it happen.

Sue Martin,  FRSA


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • Book Fest Hong Kong 2016

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    Break time, seen from the 8th floor of the Kellet School in Hong Kong…

    Sue Martin and the Books go Walkabout team are in Hong Kong this week. (May 2016)

    Working in partnership with The Kellett School, with generous funding from the school Annual Fund, Sue and a fabulous creative team of authors, photographers and poets, are delivering Book Fest across two campuses on the island.

    The programme of work, is designed to add value to the schools curriculum around writing, story creation and delivery, as well as creativity and critical thinking about form and content.

    The work is delivered by Australian Author Carole Wilkinson, Nigerian author and photographer Ifeoma Onyefulu and poet and writer Cheryl Moskowitz.

    bookIconImageYou can see the daily narratives and galleries of the creative energy generated on the project pages of Books go Walkabout here.

    After the week long event we will be publishing our learning and recommendations for trans-continental book and literacy project delivery, as well as celebrating, in detail, the work of the children who were enthused and creatively encouraged by our authors. Watch this space for details.


    Editor’s Note:

    SmithMartin LLP,  through the vehicle of their international books and literacy project, Books go Walkabout, are actively seeking more project partners in both the USA and Africa.

    We use our project management, book procurement and curriculum support skills to devise, develop and deliver cross community, cross art form projects to interested clusters of schools, community organisations or tertiary education settings.

    Contact Sue Martin at SmithMartin LLP for informal discussions at any time.

    Image credit: Eigth floor image courtesy of Sue Martin
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    International projects created and delivered…

  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • Books for a school in the Philippines

    Books for Philippines
    Packing for the Philippines…

    Books Go Walkabout have recently sent parcels of books to the Philippines with parents from Kellett Care, delivering social projects for Kellett School, Hong Kong.

    Committee members and parents are travelling to the Philippines to meet directly with the teachers and children, and delivering the books as part of their work with Kellett Care. They are also taking goods that have been bought with funds from parents and these packages include essential items for the school, such as pencils, paper and stationary.

    The books from Books Go Walkabout are picture books and will be used by the school to enable further work on reading and writing. We hope that this will bring some stories of faraway places to their shores and also to help and encourage them in learning to read and to write.

    We are hoping to continue our work with the school in the future and help in other ways to support reading, writing and communication. We want to share aour love of reading and sharing stories and books across the world.

    Books Go Walkabout is a global project, based in Cambridge, UK and is a part of SmithMartin Partnership LLPVisit Books go Walkabout on-line...

    Sue Martin & Tim Smith

    BooksGoWalkabout.com


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • Kate Grenville at the Australia and New Zealand Festival of Literature and Arts

    Kate Grenville, One Life, a new book from Cannongate...
    See more here…

    Kate Grenville was in conversation at the Australia and New Zealand Festival of Literature and Arts in London on Saturday 30th May, 2015.

    The great pleasure in being a bookseller and publisher is the opportunity to hear, and develop a wider understanding of, great authors and their work.

    Kate’s new book One Life, has just been published with Canongate Books. It is the story about her mother Nance, born in 1912 in New South Wales.

    A remarkable story, not because Nance became famous or wealthy, but because the story is about a woman growing up in a harsh family in Australia in the 1920’s and onwards.

    After training as a pharmacist, she went to work in a local chemist and learnt much more about life than dispensing drugs.

    Kate Grenville has a remarkable way of telling a story and after a few minutes of conversations and readings from One Life, it felt that we knew this woman Nance, her character of directness and ambition, striving to do all she could to make the most of life. As a young girl this was not easy at that time, but her determination was unstoppable!

    It was a schoolteacher who changed her life and Mr Crisp, left her with a love of literature. Nance instilled in Kate a love of words, Nance had poetry in her mind and was able to deliver apposite quotes just when needed.

    This was an amazing chance to listen to Kate Grenville and also hear about the very special book, The Secret River. The Secret River, by Kate Grenville

    So now to read the book, One Life, from the opening pages it will be a book that will be hard to put down.

    Check out the website for further conversations and adventures at the Aus and NZ Fest with lots of exciting authors.

    Sue Martin


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • Australia and New Zealand Festival of Literature and Arts, London

    Image 5The Festival runs over the weekend of May 30/31st 2015 with an amazing collection of authors and illustrators from ‘down under’.

    As publishers and booksellers, with strong project links to Australia, the range, diversity and quality of the Festival programme makes the event hugely attractive.

    We are so excited about going along to the Festival and soaking up the engaging work of such talented authors such as; Kate Grenville, Tim Winton and Howard Jacobson.

    The Secret River is a favourite book, as it paints such an amazing picture of life in Australia in early1800’s.

    image4-14.jpgKate Grenville is in discussion about her new memoir One Life: My Mother’s Story. The book pays tribute to a woman whose life spanned a century of tumult and change; for whom the spectacular shifts of the 20th century offered new freedoms and choices in an era when women had been expected to have no ambitions beyond the domestic. It is a deeply moving homage by one of Australia’s finest writers.

    With the publication of nine novels, a collection of short stories and four books about the writing process, Kate Grenville is one of Australia’s best-known contemporary authors. Her work includes Lilian’s Story (1985), Dreamhouse (1986), Dark Places (1994) and The Secret River (2005).

    Follow us on Twitter at the Fest! @booksgowalk

    Sue Martin, Books Go Walkabout – our literacy and tech project, joining authors and illustrators together with children across the globe…


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • E-Reading for South Africa

     

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    See the text anywhere…

    World Reader and Cambridge University Press, South Africa (CUP SA) are working in partnership on e-readers and mobile phones.

    This means that anyone with a phone (non-smart phone), in South Africa can now access books and stories, through the World Reader app, hosted on the cloud based mobile application platform BiNu. This enables phones such as Nokia, which are widely used across the continent of Africa, to be used as reading devices.

    Wow!!

    This is amazing news for literacy and for all who are working to make reading a possibility for everyone across the world.

    Niall McNulty, digital publisher at CUP SA, described the development as ‘genius’.

    ‘A recent report by UNESCO, Reading in the mobile era: A study of mobile reading in developing countries, highlights the importance of using mobile devices to encourage a culture of reading by providing access to books to people who previously had none.’African Branch of Cambridge University Press, 11.8.14

    Last year, World Reader had 330,000 monthly active users, reading 650,000 books on mobile phones.

    CUP has made 360 e books available via the app, including titles from the Cambridge African Language Library which is a primary reading series.

    SmithMartin Partnership are excited at this development and all that it may mean for future readers. We are working with World Reader in a smaller way, through our Books Go Walkabout project to support e-reading and literacy.

    The way ahead for future readers!

    Sue Martin

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    Books Go Walkabout, Dolphin Booksellers,

    part of SmithMartin Partnership LLP


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...

  • Kellett School, Hong Kong Students in Beijing

    Image 2Year 5 Kellett School students have just returned from a week in Beijing.

    An experience of a lifetime with many cultural visits and contact with students in the capital of China. At Books Go Walkabout we just think this is an amazing experience and will produce life long memories and connections with China. What an experience!

    In March, this year we were pleased to work with Year 5’s on books written by award winning author, Carole Wilkinson, The Dragonkeeper Trilogy. The books are about a slave girl and other dragon keepers in Ancient China. They are some amazing fiction stories with excellent research and information about life in Ancient China. The books were sent from the UK, written by Carole in Australia and read by students in Hong Kong. We held a video conversation with Carole direct to the students at school, which was great and the students went away eager to read more of the stories.

    Books Go Walkabout is on the journey….. Ancient China and beyond!!

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    Sue Martin – Books go Walkabout


  • News and fresh thinking from SmithMartin Partnership LLP
    We are always happy to explore new partnerships and projects in our core expertise areas - childcare, early years, education, charities, social business, governance, fund raising, literacy, books and web communications to support the work across all sectors.

    Email office@smithmartinpartnership.com for an exploratory review...