Community Reading Award winners announced!
We are delighted to have awarded grants of £1,400 to 14 of our partner organisations across Africa so that they can deliver micro-projects as part of our new Community Reading Award.
Our Head of Programmes here at Book Aid International, Samantha Thomas-Chuula explained: “Our partners have innovative ideas of how to get books to people who might not otherwise have the chance to read, but they’re often held back by a lack of resources. These ideas are especially important now as Covid-19 continues to create challenges for people trying to read and learn. We are delighted to be supporting these projects and we can’t wait to see how they help many more people discover the joy and value of reading.”
We work with a network of over 100 partners to deliver our work every year, and the Community Reading Award has been developed to give these partners the opportunity to realise their ambitions.
The judging panel for the Community Reading Award included African Library and Information Associations and Institutions (AfLIA) director Dr Nkem E. Osuigwe. AfLIA works to promote and support African libraries and information professionals. AfLIA Executive Director Dr. Helena Asamoah-Hassa said: “AfLIA is enthused with this Community Reading Award that encourages African libraries to think innovatively of how to reach and provide information and literacy services to their user communities where they are and not just within the four walls of the library. We are happy to work with Book Aid International to ensure that other libraries learn from the awardees and together form a pool of public and community libraries that can literally transform lives and communities in Africa.” We will be following the winners’ progress and will be providing regular updates here on our website and over on our social media channels.
The full list of winners is below:
- The Reading Awareness Campaign to Pregnant Teenagers project will provide pregnant teens with access to books to help them develop strong literacy skills, succeed in education and gain vocational skills.
Partners: National Library of Uganda and Wakisa Ministries.
- The SOMAKO (READit) project aims to get 300 children in rural Uganda reading by putting a book into every child’s hands every day for 300 days. Readers will be supported by 20 volunteers from the local community who will act as librarians at local reading hubs.
Partners: Uganda Community Library Association and the Mpolyabigere Community Libraries.
- The Magoro Mobile Bicycle Library project will create access to books in six rural Ugandan villages by delivering books by bicycle weekly. Visits from the bicycle library will be supported by reading volunteers who will encourage young people to explore books.
Partners: Uganda Community Library Association and Improve the Youth.
- The I am a Story Champ project aims to involve 400 vulnerable children in reading by setting up reading centres in their communities and then running a reading competition, the winners of which will receive scholarships, to motivate the children to get involved with reading.
Partners: Uganda Community Library Association and the Mummy Foundation Community Library.
- The Kagoli Community Reading Enhancement project will establish a community library in the slum community of Katwe in Uganda’s capital Kampala and train community reading champions to support children in reading.
Partners: Uganda Community Library Association and the Pallisa Public library.
- The Community Mobile Mountain Bike Libraries project will recruit five local youths to become Mobile Mountain Bike Librarians who will take books from the local community library to out-of-school children in rural Uganda.
Partners: Uganda Community Library Association, the Marko Lukooya Community Library and The Music for Life Africa Foundation.
- The Informal School with Library Books project will establish a “moving library” service which will visit informal schools in Nairobi’s Mathare Slum community, giving children in extremely poorly resourced schools access to books.
Partners: The Mathare Youth Sports Assocation and The Victorious King Education Centre.
- The Reaching the Hard to Reach project will establish school libraries in 10 schools across Kenya’s impoverished Ngomeni region of Kitui County, training 20 teachers in how to use books in the classrooms and helping more children learn to read and succeed in education.
Partners: Kenya National Library Service and the Mwingi community library.
- The Laikipia County Community Library Reading Initiative will create a new community library in Nothern Laikipia county which will serve nomadic communities, supporting education for an under-served population.
Partners: Kenya National Library Service and the Laikipia community library.
- The Toto Smart Book Club will create a small library in the Bondeni Maternity in Nakuru county, Kenya, where many young women live in poverty. The book club will help them see the value of reading for the children and provide health information.
Partners: Kenya National Library Service, Nakuru Library and Bondeni sub county Hospital.
- The Love Through Books project will establish a library in the Africa Hope Centre Orphanage in Mathare, a slum community in Nairobi.
Partners: The Mathare Youth Sports Association and the Africa Hope Centre.
- The Mkaika Community Reading project will create greater access to books and establish new reading and learning opportunities for both school children and non-school going members of the community.
Partners: Malawi National Library service and Mkaika Full Primary School.
- The Ekhaya Reading project will support the development of a reading culture in a children’s home by setting up a library. Children range from ECD to secondary age with the home also housing young people over 18 who are in higher education.
Partners: Edward Nlovu Memorial Library and Ekhaya Kip Keino Children’s Home.
- The Ekon Community Literacy Project will establish a community library in the fishing community of Ekon, Ghana, where illiteracy remains a challenge. Children will be supported by community volunteers to join in fun reading activities, helping them learn to read more easily.
Partners: Ghana Library Authority and local community and religious leaders.
We would like to thank Dr Nkem E. Osuigwe and Chair of IBBY UK Pam Dix for being part of the judging panel.
Image provided by The Mummy Foundation.