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.
Apr 26, 2012

African Village Libraries - Role of Aya Books

Funds raised from GlobalGiving and other generous donors will enable us to furnish each of FAVL’s 15 libraries in Burkina Faso and Ghana with a set of the wildly popular "Aya de Yopougon" graphic novels. The graphic novel series follows the real-life adventures of the heroine, Aya, and her friends and family in the neighborhood of Yopougon in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. Kids love the Aya books because they can relate to the culture reflected in the storyline and enjoy looking at the drawings.  Both elements are very important for encouraging children to read, which helps them maintain their literacy skills and reading fluency outside of the classroom and during the long summer break.

The fictional girl from Côte d'Ivoire has taken Burkina Faso and community libraries in western Africa by storm!  The Aya series are the most popular children’s books in the few FAVL libraries lucky enough to have even one set of the books.  As a former Peace Corps volunteer and instrumental founder of FAVL’s newest library in Béléhédé says, “The library has Aya 1 through 5 and none of the books are ever in the library for long. The minute one Aya is returned, it is immediately checked out again.”

The need for more culturally relevant children’s books is demonstrated by the high number of visits to FAVL libraries.  For example, FAVL’s oldest and most frequented library, Béréba, Burkina Faso, welcomed 13,461 visitors in 2011.  The village library in Sara, Burkina Faso, established in 2005, has rapidly grown in popularity:  it received 4,954 visitors in 2011.  Many of these library patrons are primary and secondary school children. Imagine the return on your investment (e.g., book usage, the encouragement of a love of reading in a child, and literacy development), not to mention the joy, a set of Aya books would create in the FAVL libraries.

Each FAVL library should have at least one set of the Aya series in its collection.  Your GlobalGiving donation will help provide culturally relevant “Aya” books to FAVL’s rural village libraries. We thank you for your support as we bring access to books and a love of reading to unserved areas.

We would also like to thank all the generous past GlobalGiving donors who have helped FAVL create new libraries and support operations in our existing libraries.  These libraries are popular and integral cultural and informational centers in the tiny Burkinabè villages that are the core of our mission.

Links:

Apr 16, 2012

Camp Organization Underway!

Learning how to read the alphabet
Learning how to read the alphabet

We're working on organizing the camps for the 2012 season. Progress has been slow but steady. The timeline for the camps has been worked out, and the first will in Béréba from July 23 to July 28, and they will continue at all 12 of our libraries until September 29. So the next six months will be very busy. We have worked out the schedule for this year. This year, a special focus will be put on books and activities that focus on hygiene and health: handwashing, tooth-brushing, malaria, HIV/AIDS, dysentery and treating wounds. Money donated will go to buying books on these topics and supplies to for our reading activities (including toothpaste, toothbrushes, local ingredients to make anti-mosquito cream). So far we have collected about a third of the money that we need to run all 12 of the camps. But there's still time to donate to help 300 children in the Sahel learn how to read!

Girls reading
Girls reading
Anti-Mosquito Cream with Neem Leaves
Anti-Mosquito Cream with Neem Leaves

Links:

Jan 31, 2012

Continued Success in Belehede

The Belehede Library
The Belehede Library

The village library of Béléhédé has been up and running for six months now! It has become an extremely important resource for the villagers, most of whom had never had access to reading materials before the building of the library. Thanks to generous donations through GlobalGiving and other sources, we were able to buy a large stock of books in French, Moré, Arabic and English for the library. The Béléhédé library currently has about 750 books.

The librarian was trained by a FAVL activities facilitator for two weeks, and has enthusiastically taken up his post. He runs weekly activities with villagers, including story times and game contests. Kids and adults alike frequent the library to check out books and to play games like Scrabble and Waré (a Burkinabè game). It has truly become a center of knowledge and culture in the village.

In September 2011, FAVL was able to hold its first reading camp in Béléhédé, helping 25 primary school students improve their reading skills through group and individual tutoring sessions, informational sessions with books about malaria and HIV/AIDS and artistic activities. Since the end of the camp, the library has continued to work with the same group of elementary school students on a weekly basis to maintain their literacy skills.

Now that the Béléhédé library has a sufficient stock of books, we're ending the project. But if you would like to still contribute to Béléhédé, we have a new project to fund reading camps in all of Burkina's libraries, including this village. Thank you so much to all of donors for your generous support of FAVL projects!

Dounko with Belehede Librarian During Training
Dounko with Belehede Librarian During Training
Reading Camp 2011
Reading Camp 2011

Links:

An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?

Reviews of Friends of African Village Libraries (FAVL)

Great Nonprofits
Read and write reviews about Friends of African Village Libraries (FAVL) on GreatNonProfits.org.