With collaboration of the local community, we build small, sustainable libraries that cater to the needs of the local populace in developing countries. We aim to send out two teams every year to build the libraries and to educate and train the local volunteers in proper maintenance of the libraries.
In this long-term partnership, we aim for each of our libraries to be self-sustainable within 3 years of its establishment. A collaborative partnership with overseas stakeholders is one of our key working principles. The local community is involved as much as possible to ensure the systems implemented are relevant and to instill better community ownership over the programme.
To achieve this, we maintain regular communication with our volunteers on the ground to gather feedback and constantly focus on improving the library. Where the need arise, the society provides logistical support. In addition, we place great importance on empowering our overseas volunteers through provision of training in library administration and pedagogical skills. On an annual basis, our Singapore-based teams provide further training as the need arises.
The Reads for Kids Programme
Building on the library as a foundation, we have developed our own complementary Reads for Kids Programme. This programme aims to enhance the outreach and efficacy of our libraries that aims to enhance the outreach and efficacy of our libraries and comprises of the following broad aspects:
1. Improving accessibility to books via an efficient library administrative system, visitor- friendly opening hours and loaning protocols.
2. Increasing awareness of the library through partnerships with local schools and neighbouring communities.
3. Continuing outreach efforts to increase interest in reading and learning through weekly library-centered activities and various ongoing activities; e.g. book reading contests, essay writing contests.
4. Maintaining open communication with locals to gather feedback and to institute timely follow-up measures if necessary.
We are currently developing an education unit, consisting of a team of educators and individuals with a special interest in library administration. Its main function is to expand and enhance upon the aforementioned framework.
WHAT WE DO
- Established Libraries
- Under development
Our Recipe for a Library
Recce and site selection
Organize and ship books
Prepare and arrange books
Train library staff volunteers
Monitor established libraries
Follow up with volunteers