From Books on Horseback to Books on Wheels

by The Frances and Henry Riecken Foundation, Inc. Vetted since 2009 Site Visit Verified


There is a network of 53 rural community libraries in Honduras that is longing for new books and programming support from their central office. A "bibliobus" that can be outfitted as a mobile library is badly needed to service these libraries and even more rural communities with no libraries. Currently some of the more remote communities are being served on horseback. While the volunteers and horses are willing there are limitations to what can be transported by this particular "pony express.

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Honduras is the poorest country in Central America. Currently there are five central office staff and one vehicle attempting to provide support to 53 libraries which serve over 11,500 people, 85% of whom are children and youth. In an attempt to get books to even more remote communities several of the libraries send volunteers and books to those communities on horseback. Quite obviously many of the libraries are not currently receiving the attention they deserve or access to new books.


Having a new, well-equipped "bibliobus" will allow the central office staff to do additional site visits to the 53 libraries in the network enhancing the existing programming of story hours, books clubs, early childhood development, youth debate clubs, adult development and promotion of the democratic process. In addition, the "bibliobus" will provide those same services to rural communities with no libraries. " Literacy and education are key to impoverished countries raising their standards.

Long-Term Impact

We know that, in 2010, an average of 1230 people used our libraries each month. By adding to our programming support we hope to increase that number. Our libraries have evolved into community learning centers attracting more and more residents of each village. The best way to keep Honduran families together in Honduras is to provide opportunity and that is what we do. To the extent that we can expand our service offerings and add new books we will be giving more people access to information.


Video of the work that we do in Central America
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Organization Information

The Frances and Henry Riecken Foundation, Inc.

Location: Princeton, NJ - USA
Website: http:/​/​
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @rieckenlibraries
Project Leader:
William Cartwright
Emerald Hills, CA United States

Funded Project!

Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.

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