My name is Christine Bothma.

I first became aware of the importance and need for ABET more than 40 years ago when I was working at the University of Cape Town. I had an administrative position in the Faculty of Social Science. The University was revamping its offices and decided that a new “Faculty of Social Sciences” sign was in order which happened to be right outside my office. One day, some workmen came in and took down the old sign to be replaced with new, individual letters. As I was sitting in my office, an old man sheepishly came in with some of the letters in his hand and asked me if I could please put the letters in the correct order and the right way up so that he could attach them correctly. He couldn’t read. This really left an impression on me that I have never forgotten.

From then on I became aware of the tragedy of not being literate. Fifteen years later, I was fortunate to meet Professor Veronica McKay from the ABET Institute at UNISA. Since then I have been proud to have assisted her with the layout of study materials for would-be ABET practitioners, learners through UNESCO and DFID and the Botswana Department of Education and most recently with the kha ri gude project from South Africa’s own Department of Education.