Friends of African Village Libraries (FAVL)

Friends of African Village Libraries is committed to long-term management of and support for small community libraries in rural Africa. Our goal is to establish long-term relationships with community libraries, rather than provide an initial donation and move on to another village. We believe that every child and adult should have the opportunity to pick up a book and read, so we are dedicated to increasing access to reading material and other information in rural villages in sub-Saharan Africa.
Sep 20, 2013

Complete Aya series now in each village library!

New Aya books ready to be sent to village
New Aya books ready to be sent to village

Thanks to our ever-generous donors, we've been able to get all 6 Aya books in all 12 of village libraries in Burkina. We were even able to get some extras (a second copy of 1 book in the series for each of the libraries) because the price of the books decreased since we started the project. In total, we were able to purchase 81 Aya books. Aya books are popular in village libraries because they include characters and situations that are familiar to their everyday lives, in contrast to a lot of literature that comes from France or other countries that are not familiar to community members. 

Using the Aya books, librarians have organized group discussions, theater productions and other activities to begin dialogue about certain issues that are addressed in the series, including girls' education, teen pregnancy and alcoholism, discussions which are often easier to begin when the medium of a book or story is involved. Using a new technology called Frontline SMS, we were able to send out mass text messages to librarians to more easily keep track of which Aya books they'd already received, encourage librarians to promote the books in their villages and send out ideas for activities that librarians could organize. The books have been incredibly beneficial to the village libraries as well as their communities as a whole.

Look for more FAVL projects coming soon to GlobalGiving to help us get other book series in Burkina village Libraries.

Links:

Sep 17, 2013

2013 Reading Camps Completed

Kids reading Fatou Keita book
Kids reading Fatou Keita book

Thanks to funds from generous donors, we were able to run 7 reading camps at 6 village libraries in Burkina Faso. Twenty-five 4th grade students were invited to each of the camps, which lasted for 6 days. They spent the week working on the alphabet, syllabation and reading activities. They also participated in drawing session, mask making and theater productions. A pre- and post-test was performed at each of the libraries to evaluate each student's reading abilities, and at each camp, all of the kids had advanced to a higher reading level by the end of the camp. The camps were also an opportunity for the librarians to stretch their wings. This year, we decided to have each of the village librarians facilitate the camp at their own library. They were able to build confidence in working with a large group of children and leading activities, as well as learn new activities to organize throughout the rest of the school year.

With donated funds, we were able to provide each child with 2 nutritious daily meals (breakfast and lunch), a camp t-shirt, a notebook, a pen and a pencil. We were also able to provide art supplies like crayons, colored pencils, white paper and poster board for each reading camp. Finally, we were able to purchase a new set of 25 books, which traveled to each of the camps.

Kids reading with Village Librarian
Kids reading with Village Librarian
Dimikuy Librarian Telling a Story to Camp Kids
Dimikuy Librarian Telling a Story to Camp Kids

Links:

Jul 15, 2013

New Aya Books Are Finally Here!

Young Girl Reading Aya with Her Brother
Young Girl Reading Aya with Her Brother

After a long wait, the bookstore in Ouaga finally got more copies of the 6 Aya books! With funds raised on GlobalGiving, we were able to purchase 15 of the books (at least 2 copies of each number in the series). Each library will receive 2 of the books, and 3 libraries will receive an additional book. Readers are impatiently waiting the new books to find out what happens next in the adventures of Aya de Yopougon.

We've been increasing efforts to promote the series in the village libraries. Recently, we started working with a software called Frontline SMS, which allows us to use a computer to send a mass text message to a network of librarians and readers. We've started using Frontline to promote Aya and encourage librarians to come up with innovative activities and projects based on the books.

Links:

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