Library Veranda Renovation

  • Education
  • Women & Gender
  • Youth
  • Vanuatu
This project is led by Tristan Yerkes, a Volunteer from Vermont

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The local Primary and Junior Secondary School are growing too quickly for our small library. Our school is a center school which means we have Year 7 & 8 students who have reached adolescence. With our current student population, there is simply not enough space for all of the students to use the School library when during library classes therefore unfortunately, our Girls are often the last ones inside, if at all. The Boys always get to go in first and select books or sit and read leaving the Girls waiting outside on the grass for their turn. Since the library and the veranda are such a small spaces, if the Girls are there and the boys are coming, they leave to make space for the boys. In order to give the Girls due access, we will need to renovate the library's veranda and make it bigger. This will double the usable space for the library, achieving a sustainable solution to the problem of access.

Our school's librarian first proposed the library veranda project and arranged for community members to work on a materials list. Saikem has gained support of the school council for this project, and has even started a special D.E.A.R (Drop Everything And Read) program in anticipation of the extra space. Once the renovation is completed, the school's librarian has made plans for a reading file for students in the primary school. He is also excited to work on expanding the libaray's ICT capabilities and on improving awareness of Girls and Boys equal access to the library.

The school has successfully maintained its facilities through the government grant, and community contributions. Facilities maintenance is include in the annual budget and that includes the library. The Community is called upon to provide labor for certain projects in the school and this will be one that they are called to work on. Also myself and the new PCV that comes on board will help with monitoring the project to ensure that the Librarian can confidently carry out the activities and that the sign in sheets reflect increased use of library and reading space.

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