An incredible initiative has been started at the Johannesburg Botanical Garden in Emmarentia by a Northcliff High School pupil.

On a Rotary exchange trip to Holland in December last year, Tanya Meyer discovered the Little Free Library initiative & has since set-up the first Little Free Library in Africa.

“It’s a bit like geocaching, where treasure is hidden around the world and you can find the GPS coordinates on the app. The Little Free Library is the same principle. But if you take a book, you have to replace it with one of your books.”

Emmarentia Resident’s Association chairperson Wolfgang Phoenix is very impressed with Tanya’s initiative and wishes there were more people like her to get involved.

“She came to us before she went to Johannesburg City Parks and Zoo and we felt it was a great idea, and that we would support her with whatever she needed. She needed minimal guidance from us but we put her in touch with the right people.”

When asked about scepticism some may have about the project, Tanya brushed it off.

“People are sceptical because they distrust the community and they don’t want to get involved. I want to try and change that.”

As the library has been registered on the official website www.littlefreelibrary.org, it is officially the first in the whole of Africa!

It can be found at the Johannesburg Botanical Garden, Emmarentia, next to the first bench and is available to the public.

But just remember… if you do visit the library, if a book is taken it must be swapped out by another.

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About the Author

Brent Lindeque is the founder and editor in charge at Good Things Guy.

Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.

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