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First-ever Cape Flats Book Festival

The first-ever Cape Flats Book Festival will be held 31 August to 1 September 2019 at West End Primary School in Lentegeur, Mitchells Plain - hosted by literacy non-profit organisation Read to Rise and proudly sponsored by Old Mutual.

The Cape Flats Book Festival will showcase many local authors, illustrators, literacy NGOs and specialists, publishers and book sellers. There will be book readings, talks, workshops and a puppet show for children and adults. The Book Festival hopes to create excitement on the Cape Flats about reading through positive engagement with books. The festival will be held over the weekend leading up to national book week 2-8 September 2019.

Anroux Marais, Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Western Cape Government and Councillor Eddie Andrews will be attending the festival. There will be over 40 authors speaking over the two days, there will be over 30 exhibitors including Bargain Books and Exclusive Books. There will also be prizes up for grabs. West End Primary School will be selling food and drinks.

Some of the Book Festival Highlights include:

  • Luthando Lucas (award-winning author) 31 August 2019 9:00

  • Diana Ferrus (who brought Saartjie Baartman's remains back to SA) 31 August 2019 11:00

  • Menziwa Tsholoba (author of ‘In and Out of Robben Island’) 31 August 2019 11:00

  • Loyiso Mkize & Clyde Beech (Kwezi Comics Illustrator) 31 August 2019 11:00

  • Fatima & Gadija Sydow (of Kaap, Kerrie end Koesisters) 31 August 2019 12:00

  • Nikki Jacobs will launch her new childrens book ‘Mean Cow’ 31 August 2019 12:00

  • Zubeida Jaffer (award-winning journalist) 31 August 2019 15:00

  • Workshop for people wanting to self-publish (by Tshienda Publishers) 31 August 2019 15:00

  • Literacy Workshops by Maurisa Moloto for adults to help children to read 31 August 2019 12:00 and 1 September 2019 11:00

  • Ryland Fisher (journalist and author of ‘Race’) will be talking about the current affairs in SA with Raymond Joseph, Ncebakazi Mnukwana and Solly Moeng 1 September 2019 10:00

  • Amr Salie (13 year old author from Macassar) 1 September 2019 11:00

  • Yusuf Daniels (‘Living Coloured’ currently the number 1 bestseller in South Africa) 1 September 2019 12:00

  • Athol Williams (award-winning poet) 1 September 2019 14:00

  • OAKY Puppet Show 1 September 2019 15:00

  • OAKY Mascot 13:00-13:30

“Old Mutual is proud to be associated with Read to Rise. Education continues to be a core focus and anchor of our responsible business philosophy. Through educational activities like Read to Rise, we work to create greater financial inclusion and help the communities in which we operate, to achieve their lifetime financial goals. And it all starts with reading,” says Tabby Tsengiwe of Old Mutual.

Plainsman are running the writing competition for children in Mitchells Plain – the winners will be announced on Sunday 4pm at the festival. Many have come onboard with donations including The SALI Trust who have sponsored 300 OAKY books for children attending the festival.

‘Establishing the Cape Flats Book Festival is an act of hope. It is like planting a tree in a desert. From the outside this may look like a pointless endeavour because trees don’t grow in a desert but those who look to the Cape Flats in hope know that this is not a desert, that there are hidden lakes and gushing rivers that may not be seen but are there nonetheless.’ says Read to Rise Chairman Athol Williams. ‘Only a tree of hope can call these waters to its roots. And so this tree will flourish and soon there’ll be a whole thriving lush forest of inspiration, of imagination, of innovation and indeed, of hope. This is no ordinary book festival, it comes with a vision of transforming a seeming desert into a magnificent forest. This is the Cape Flats Book Festival.’ says Williams.

READ to RISE, founded in September 2013, works with 75 primary schools in Mitchells Plain and Soweto. To date, over 3,300 class programmes have been conducted and over 167,000 new story books have been given out – over 76,000 children have benefitted from the READ to RISE programmes.

For more information, please visit

Saturday 31 August 2019 9am-5pm

Sunday 1 September 2019 10am-5pm

West End Primary School, Merrydale Avenue, Lentegeur, Mitchells Plain, Cape Town

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