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.
Jun 25, 2014

New Fatou Keita Books Just in Time for Summer Vacation

Kids Reading Fatou Keita Books at Bereba Library
Kids Reading Fatou Keita Books at Bereba Library

We now have enough money to buy about 80 Fatou Keita books at bookstores here in Ouaga. That's 6 new books per village library in Burkina Faso! When FAVL's Activities Coordinator, Alidou Boué, is in Ouaga next week, we're going to purchase the books and he's going to bring him back books to distribute to the 7 libraries in his region. Now that it's summer vacation, we're excited to have some new and colorful books. We're also holding summer reading camps at some of the libraries, so the kids will be glad to see the new books.

As I've said before, "Fatou Keita" books are children's picture books written by Ivorian author, Fatou Keita. Titles include La Voleuse des Sourires, Le Coq Qui Ne Voulait Plus Chanter, Sinabani, La Petite Dernière, Le Billet de 10000 F. The stories are set in familiar African settings, and each page features a large, colorful illustration with a few lines of text. The books are really adapted to African life and the primary school reading level. Even younger children who can't yet read enjoy flipping through them and marveling at the illustrations.

The 80 new books will be very much enjoyed by children visiting the libraries, and librarians looking for new books to feature during storytime!

Links:

Apr 14, 2014

Getting Closer to Burkina's First Mobile Library

Girl reading popular Ivorian series
Girl reading popular Ivorian series

Thanks to generous donors who keep giving to the Motorbike Mobile Library project, we're getting closer to our goal. FAVL's Motorbike Library will be the first of it's kind in Burkina Faso, a country with one of the lowest literacy rates in the world. The goal of the project is to provide access to books in hard-to-reach rural villages in the southwest. Many of these villages are hard to get to due to pot-holed, unpaved roads. While they may have primary schools and middle schools, the classrooms are overcrowded and the stock of schoolbooks is limited. Access to other reading materials to supplement lessons is out of the question. Novels and picture books are expensive, often out of the price range for the average family, and are only available in larger urban centers. While FAVL has established and continues to support village libraries in the area, not everyone can easily reach them. The motorbike library would supply 400 adult and children's books to 12 rural communities in 3 zones. People would be able to lend books from the mobile library for two weeks, at which time the coordinator/driver would return to allow them to take new books. While in the communities, the coordinator/driver will also perform local folktales and other stories to encourage people to take advantage of the library. The cart carrying the books on the back of the moto will be covered to protect the books from dust and rain. We know that community members will enjoy finally having access to novels by African authors, picture books and farming and hygiene guides in local languages, and it's thanks to many wonderful donors that this project will become a reality.

Links:

Apr 14, 2014

Bringing Computer Literacy to Burkina's Girls

Girls who will be involved in the program
Girls who will be involved in the program

Donations for the Girls' Computer Literacy and Leadership Program are going strong. Thanks to generous donors we're getting closer to our goal of helping 50 high school girls learn computer literacy and in the process obtain valuable leadership and life skills like self-confidence.

At the moment, there is little access to computers in Hounde, and no computer training available for local high school students. However, technical skills are widely sought in larger cities as the world becomes more technologically literate and are important for students who wish to get ahead. Girls, in particular, have less opportunities to obtain computer skills and often lack the confidence to seek out these opportunities. Through the program, 10 local high school girls will be invited to attend five one-month long computer training workshops (for a total of 50 girls). They will learn basic computer literacy skills: how to use a mouse, type and use Microsoft Word, Publisher and Excel. They will use this knowledge to create their own poems, novels and illustrations in order to entertain, educate and empower other girls in their community. The books will be distributed to village libraries and will also be available for purchase.

Links:

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