Library and Literacy Project

  • Community Growth
  • Education
  • Youth
  • Cameroon
This project is led by Elizabeth Clinch, a Volunteer from Colorado

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The site of the new library.
Elizabeth works with her counterparts to complete the Library and Litercy Project.
Our community seeks to build a school library. The library will be accessible to the entire community, but its primary purpose will be to provide housing for the schools books and provide students with a safe space to access and read books. The library will be managed by high school girls who will undergo library and literacy trainings. These trainings will provide the girls with professional skills, job training, and they will act as role models in the community. Currently we have a small closet that is serving as a library. The closet is only able to provide storage for the school’s books but does not provide any space for the students to use the books. The school is equipped with well over 100 books and has over 1000 students who are keen to use them but presently do not have the space, thus the current structure is insufficient for the school needs.

The conception of the “library and literacy project” is the result of the Community Needs Analysis, as well as careful and inclusive conversations with members of the school community. The CNA indicated that there are low literacy levels among students and community members as well as a lack of reading culture. This is due to the lack of space and reading resources available to the students and to the community. Though conversations including school community stakeholders, i.e. teachers, administration, PTA, and most importantly students, the school community decided that a library would be the best project to promote literacy and foster a reading culture.  The library was originally suggested to me by the administration as well as other teachers but we did not move forward until the entire school community had a voice in the project. My principle is the primary contact in this project he will be working closely with me as well as the PTA to administrate the building process. 

The community is committed to this project and has already started fundraising for their investment as well as mobilizing workers to donate labor. Crafts people in the village, such as carpenters and construction workers have also pledged to donate skilled labor as well as materials. Lastly, students are very excited for this project and are eagerly awaiting a place to read their “readers.” 

Under the guidance of a school administrator, female student leaders selected to run and maintain the library will be responsible for selecting and training their successors, ensuring the continued management of the library. The school administrators and the PTA have set aside school funds to ensure the continued maintenance of the library including but not limited to buying new books, repairing damages, and paying utilities. Teachers will receive literacy trainings before the library is opened so that they incorporate the library into their lessons and encourage students to use the library outside of school. 

Community Contributions
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