Apply to Join

Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren

by Friends of African Village Libraries (FAVL)
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Provide reading opportunities to schoolchildren
Readers at Ecole A in Hounde, July 2020
Readers at Ecole A in Hounde, July 2020

Libraries and most other public activities in Burkina Faso were closed due to COVID19, in late March 2020. The government in July decided to start reopening, and the office of the mayor of Houndé decided to permit activities to resume. Officially, the pandemic has largely spared Burkina Faso, with only a few thousand cases, total, as of late July. It is impossible to know at present how accurate the official case tallies are.

FAVL-Burkina Faso, in consultation with local authorities, decided to reopen activities in mid-July. Schools remains closed until October. The mobile library first outing was a "practice" run to several schools to let students and teachers in the area know that the mobile library would resume regular visits. In each schools a few children and some teachers were present. In the second week of activity, more students were present.

The mobile library was "re-supplied" with about 60 books for use by young readers. Thanks for your support for the mobile library over the years!

Readers at Ecole B, Hounde, July 2020
Readers at Ecole B, Hounde, July 2020
Reading in the mobile library, July 2020
Reading in the mobile library, July 2020
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Puzzles with mobile library, Burkina Faso
Puzzles with mobile library, Burkina Faso

Thanks for your support of this project over the past months. As you might imagine, the COVID-19 virus has been put a hold on most library activities. Libraries in Burkina Faso, Ghana and Uganda have been closed following recommendations of local authorities. One of the last activities done in Burkina Faso was to create a book about COVID-19 and how to prevent the spread of the virus. The book was distributed to the last visit to villages in Tuy province mid-March. Instead of reporting on recent activities, then we have a selection of photos from the last month (February) when libraries were open. We are looking forward to eventual re-opening of libraries as soon as prudent.

Kids reading, mobile library, Burkina
Kids reading, mobile library, Burkina
Drawing time, mobile library, Burkina
Drawing time, mobile library, Burkina
Drawings! Mobile library, Burkina Fas
Drawings! Mobile library, Burkina Fas
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Mobile library on the road to Hounde
Mobile library on the road to Hounde

In our last report we noted that the security situation in Burkina Faso had worsened and so FAVL was moving the mobile library (BMP, or Bibliothèque Mobile Pénélope) to the town of Houndé. A partnership agreement with the office of the mayor was finally signed in November. $200 worth of new books was purchased at the end of November at the International Ouagadougou Book Fair (FILO), thanks to a generous donor. We had an advertisement for recruiting a librarian/driver, but unfortunately only one person responded and they were not qualified. So we have to continue to try to recruit someone who can begin operations. It is a half-time position (20 hours a week) and many educated young people are constantly looking for full-time, longer term work. So it is hard to recruit successfully. This moving of the library has taken a long time. We are frustrated, and know that donors also are frustrated. Patience, though, is the way to effect some good.

Some brief updates about other library support: The Kitengesa library in Uganda continues to thrive. This year a health reading camp was held for adult women, focusing on women’s cancer. Another reading camp was held for teenagers, and a further women’s reading camp is planned for later in the year. The Kitengesa Library Band continues to practice and perform.

In Burkina Faso, we are currently supporting 34 community libraries. Terrorist activity in northern Burkina Faso unfortunately has meant that four libraries are temporarily closed due to danger (schools and administrative buildings are targets.) For the libraries that are open, we continue to do the best we can to provide regular assistance to mayors and rural councils in managing the libraries, supply select libraries with new books, train librarians, and offer salary support for some of the librarians. Our Burkina team continues to produce photos books for young readers as well as books written by young people and illustrated with local illustrators.

In Ghana, our able partner organization CESRUD and its library coordinator Paul Ayutoliya continue to manage the three libraries of Sumbrungu, Gowrie-Kunkua, and Sherigu. These libraries regularly receive 30 or more visits a day- about 1,000 visits each month. They are open for night reading, as they are now connected to electricity. Donors this year helped fix the fans (it gets to 110 degrees during the day!). After school reading programs were held in September and are planned for this summer. All three libraries received several hundred new books over the course of the year thanks to support from Biblionef Ghana and the Ghana Book Trust.

Updates and lots of photos from all three countries are regularly posted to the FAVL blog

Mobile library at Hounde mayor office
Mobile library at Hounde mayor office
Speedy little mobile library
Speedy little mobile library
Coming soon to Hounde
Coming soon to Hounde
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
The BMP library in action in Kaya
The BMP library in action in Kaya

The secruity situation in Burkina Faso has continued to worsen, and so FAVL is planning to bring the mobile library to the town of Houndé, per the previous report on the mobile library project (now called the Bibliothèque Mobile Pénélope). This planning is taking much longer than expected, primarily because the staff at the municipal council are very slow to finalize a partnership agreement. The partnership agreement is necessary for four reasons.

  1. First, the mobile library is most effective when it visits schools, during reading time, recess, or immediately after school. That is when most readers are "willing and able" to spend time reading. Access to school yards requires some formal cooperation with the office of the mayor (the municipal council has some authority over schools) and also the regional ministry of education officials.
  2. Second, the mobile library is highly visible in the town, and in case there are any "incidents" with the library (accidents, arguments), it is desirable to have the full support of the office of the mayor.
  3. Third, for longer-term functioning of the mobile library, the mayor has indicated he would like a town employee to be the *animateur* who operates the mobile library, with FAVL contributing technically and financially. FAVL is in favor of this model!
  4. Fourth, and prosaically, the courtyard of the council buildings is the safest place to park the mobile library, since it is always secure and have a night guard. So official permission is needed to park the mobile library there.

While we wait for the office of the mayor and the regional education ministray officials to authorize activities, we are replenishing the book stock of the mobile library, repainting the shelves, and doing regular maintenance on the tricycle. We hope to have the library operating early in the new school year, which starts October 6.

The BMP
The BMP
Hoping to see the BMP start in Hounde in October
Hoping to see the BMP start in Hounde in October
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
Mobile library garaged in Kaya
Mobile library garaged in Kaya

The mobile library has been unable to function for the past two months (may and June) due to a big increase in terrorist activity in the region. the mobile librarian is from Pissila, a village about 15 km from Kaya, and the village has seen several attacks. So the librarian has been unable to safely come to Kaya to work with the library. The FAVL team is in Kaya this week (June 24-26) planning for perhaps moving the mobile library to southwestern Burkina Faso.  We will keep donors to this project informed!

In other FAVL news:

The Kitengesa library in Uganda continues to thrive. This year a health reading camp was held for adult women, focusing on women’s cancer.  Another reading camp was held for teenagers, and a further women’s reading camp is planned for later in the year. The Kitengesa Library Band continues to practice and perform.

In Burkina Faso, we continue to support 34 community libraries. Terrorist activity in northern Burkina Faso unfortunately has meant that four libraries are temporarily closed due to danger (schools and administrative buildings are targets.)  For the libraries that are open, we continue to do the best we can to provide regular assistance to mayors and rural councils in managing the libraries, supply select libraries with new books, train librarians, and offer salary support for some of the librarians. We completed 22 summer reading camps last summer 2018, serving more than 550 4th and 5th graders. The 25 kids selected for each camp got a big injection of age-appropriate books, learned many new games, discussed hygiene tips, and made masks and comic books. We hope that many of them will become life-long readers.

In Ghana, our able partner organization CESRUD and its library coordinatorcontinue to manage the three libraries of Sumbrungu, Gowrie-Kunkua, and Sherigu. These libraries regularly receive 30+ visits a day. They are open for night reading, as they are now connected to electricity. Donors this year helped fix the fans (it gets to 110 degrees during the day!). After school reading programs were held in September and are planned for this summer. All three libraries received several hundred new books over the course of the year thanks to support from Biblionef Ghana.

Updates and lots of photos from all three countries are regularly posted to the FAVL blog.

Mobile library waiting new assignment!
Mobile library waiting new assignment!
BMP in action in April 2019
BMP in action in April 2019
BMP in action in April 2019 v2
BMP in action in April 2019 v2
Share on Twitter Share on Facebook
 

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.

Get Reports via Email

We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.

Organization Information

Friends of African Village Libraries (FAVL)

Location: San Jose, CA - USA
Website:
Facebook: Facebook Page
Twitter: @FAVLafrica
Project Leader:
Michael Kevane
Co-director, West Africa
San Jose, CA United States
$6,388 raised of $8,500 goal
 
81 donations
$2,112 to go
Donate Now Add Project to Favorites

Help raise money!

Support this important cause by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a Fundraiser

Learn more about GlobalGiving

Teenage Science Students
Vetting +
Due Diligence

Snorkeler
Our
Impact

Woman Holding a Gift Card
Give
Gift Cards

Young Girl with a Bicycle
GlobalGiving
Guarantee

Sign up for the GlobalGiving Newsletter

WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.