Today Swedish Minister for Culture and Democracy Alice Bah Kuhnke begins a one week visit to South Africa. The purpose of the trip is that Sweden wants to strengthen the cultural exchange between the two countries by appointing a Counsellor for Cultural Affairs at the Swedish Embassy in Pretoria. The trip will include a visit to 2015 ALMA laureate PRAESA (the Project for the Study of Alternative Education in South Africa) headquartered in Cape Town.
– I see PRAESA’s work as immensely prominent, and their methods are well worth a depth study, says Alice Bah Kuhnke to Swedish Newspaper Dagens Nyheter. The Swedish culture that arouses most interest in South Africa is children’s culture, which is the main reason why I go to South Africa.
The minister’s visit also includes participation in a meeting arranged by PRAESA, SA PEN, SA IBBY and the Swedish Embassy. The focus will be on the failure of the South African school system and how to support children’s literacy learning and development. Issues of social justice, approaches to literacy teaching, the role of families and the importance of translations, publishing and access to appropriate books in African languages are topics to be discussed.
More about the South Africa visit later!