Reading in Ugandan school

Loving school libraries in Uganda

10th November 2017 | Blog

Esther, 14, in Eastern Uganda doesn’t have any books at home. She wants to become a doctor so that she can treat people in her community. Esther’s school library has helped her with her studies towards her dream as it has a lot of science books.


Ugandan school
Children enjoy books in a classroom in Uganda


Our partner Africa Educational Trust (AET) creates education programmes to support adults and children like Esther in conflict-affected areas of Africa. In Uganda, they are working with other organisations to bring recovery and prosperity in eastern and northern regions where poverty and conflict have impacted the quality and accessibility of education. Many schools there are severely under-resourced and AET is working to establish school libraries and train librarians in disadvantaged primary schools. We are proud to support their work, donating brand new books for pupils to enjoy who might not otherwise have anything to read.

Here, young readers in Uganda tell us more about their school libraries:


Discovering dinosaurs



Florence, 11, goes to her school library at least once a week to borrow a book to read at home. Fruit is her favourite book because it has good pictures and she has also learned a lot about plants from it. The books in her school library have given her the opportunity to learn about things you don’t get in Uganda like snow and dinosaurs. She wants more books to be added to the library’s collection so she can keep learning new things.


Reading Buddies


Godfrey and Yowana
Reading Buddies Yowana and Godfrey


Yowana, 11 and Godfrey, 13, joined the Reading Buddies scheme at their school in February and have been reading together twice a week ever since. Every Monday and Thursday they come to their school library at six in the morning to read for an hour before schools starts. The boys have found that by reading together, their reading is improving – they learn new words from each other and are able to help each other with pronunciation. Together, they have developed a real love of reading and they are now encouraging other friends to find reading partners of their own. Both hope to become teachers when they grow up so they can help more children discover the joy of reading.


A librarian in the making




Ten year old Rebecca doesn’t have any books at home. She enjoys reading so much that she helps out in her school library, organising the books and keeping the space clean, so that she can have access to books as much as possible. Her older sister helps her with hard words and combined with the books in her school library, Rebecca’s reading and comprehension is getting better and better.


Many thanks to AET for the opportunity to share these stories and pictures with our supporters.

Our Vision for 2020

As part of our Vision for 2020, we are committed to supporting pupils struggling to learn in under-resourced schools and people affected by conflict. Find out more using the links below.


You may also like

Many pupils struggle to learn in school because they do not have the books they need. We're working with our partners to change this.
Read more >
Learn more about our work in Uganda.
Read more >
Lydia lives in a remote rural village in Uganda. She's using her community library to pursue her dream to become a writer.
Read more >