The 35th Anniversary Gala of Books For Africa was held recently in Minneapolis, Minnesota – in the Upper Midwestern region of the United States, attracting hundreds of guests and, raising over $380,000 to ship even more books to partners in Africa, according to organizers.

The « Anniversary Gala was a huge success » with attendees including Philip Jada Natana, South Sudan’s Ambassador to the U.S. As a keynote speaker, Mr. Natana used the occasion to shed light to his country’s « passion for education » which, he said, remains an important sector for growth and stability.

« Education is really actually a very major factor in stabilizing any society. And if you look at the region and most of the violence or the people involved in the violence, the fighting on behalf of the government, or fighting for rebel groups, it’s because they never had that opportunity of really going to school and getting some skills that can provide them with jobs. »

South Sudan is Africa’s newest nation. It became independent in 2011 after breaking off ties with Sudan. As the leadership in Juba works tirelessly to improve education and provide opportunities for young people, South Sudan has been an important partner of Books for Africa which is poised to send more than 110,000 books in the country.

Ambassador Natana welcomed the move as he spoke on the importance of books:

“To get to 35 years is no easy deal…this is not only a celebration of 35 years, but a chance to send more books…. Thanks to Books For Africa, most of (South Sudan’s) libraries are going to be filled with books for the first time in the history of our country. It is only through education that we can address the challenges of poverty, lack of health services, and gender inequality”, he said.

With headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota, Books For Africa is a nonprofit organization created in 1988 and dedicated to collecting, sorting, shipping, and distributing books to children and adults in Africa. AlloAfricaNews


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