Thirty Years of Building a Reading Nation
Fundza was founded in 1987 and is a strong example of a public-private partnership. Fundza is a non-governmental organisation relying on individual and corporate donations for operating expenses, but our office is headquartered in the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) in Mbabane, Swaziland's capital city. Fundza works closely with MOET to ensure that schools receive high-quality books to supplement the curriculum. During our 30 year history, we have helped develop nearly 400 school libraries throughout Swaziland. The word fundza is a SiSwati word meaning "to learn" or "to read," depending on the context.
- Are eligible to apply for a library of 1,000 books from the African Library Project.
- Receive books from other donors, including Biblionef.
- Receive training in library management and literacy promotion.
- Exchange library skills and best practices, including visiting model school libraries.
- Receive individualized assistance in setting up their libraries, including cataloging and classifying stock.
- Can participate in Fundza debates.
Nonkululeko Mdluli is the Director of Fundza, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) that promotes literacy and the love of reading in Swaziland’s schools. Born in a rural area of Swaziland, she managed to get an education with the support of her older siblings. After high school, she took a part-time night job at the University of Swaziland as a junior library assistant and got hooked on libraries. She received her Bachelor’s in Library and Information Science at the University of Botswana and her Honours Degree in Library and Information Science at Loughborough University in the UK. She then returned to Swaziland to work on library development with domestic and international partners. In 2011, she received the Compassion in Action Award from the African Library Project.
African Library Project
The African Library Project (ALP) is a US-based NGO that starts small libraries by mobilizing volunteers to conduct book drives and partnering with African organisations to turn those donated books into libraries. Fundza is ALP's partner in Swaziland. Schools and communities can apply for a library from Fundza. ALP sends 30-60 libraries each year, and Fundza distributes the books, trains the librarians, and monitors the libraries