This is an update report of happenings from CESRUD/FAVL Ghana in June. Patronage to the respective three community libraries supported by FAVL through CESRUD for the past three weeks in June had been very good. At the Sumbrungu community library, pupils and students from the surrounding schools were the most frequent users of the library especially during the day time. I read with students from St. Charles Lwanga JHS during one of their visits and I encouraged those who were curious to know how the story will end to borrow the books home and finished the story and come and shared with me their findings. At the Sherigu community library, attendance to the library were good. St. Peter and Paul Academy pupils and students, pupils and students from the Dorongo basic school were the regular visitors. One of the books the librarian read with patrons was about the work of a midwife. After the reading, some of the patrons expressed optimism in becoming midwives in the future whiles others believed the work is complicated and hence will not want to become one in the future. At the Gowrie-Kunkua library, attendance to the library in June was significantly great after the inauguration, lots of pupils and students from far away basic schools visited the library regularly in their good numbers.
The extension works at the Sumbrungu Community library are currently continuing, ceiling joints have been fixed with electrical work partly done, plastering and fitting of windows frame have been done. So with the pace of work, everything should be nearing finishing by the close of this month if the available funds could cover the cost of the remaining work. We are thankful to CESRUD/FAVL for this great support for the Sumbrungu community library. We want to specially acknowledge the efforts of Mr. Rex Asanga, the executive director of CESRUD for conceiving the idea and seeking for funding for the work. Special thanks also goes to the Bolgatanga Amsteram Foundation and our main donor FAVL for their kind gestures.
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: This is a summary of CESRUD/FAVL Ghana librarians for the month of May 2021. The three respective community libraries librarian’s reports that patronage for the Month of May was better than that of the previous month with many of Ghana’s schools reopening. At the Sumbrungu community library, the librarians reported that patronage to the library was good because of the resumption of the basics schools and the interesting library activities that took place during the month. At the Sherigu community library, the librarian also reports that there was an increment in the number of patrons recorded in May than the previous month. She captures group reading and individual reading as the interesting activities that took place in the month. The Gowrie-Kunkua librarian reported that attendance to the library for May was good especially during the day time. The library reopening has prompted a great many patrons to visit at all hours of operation. In conclusion the librarians expressed their appreciations on behalf of their community and library’s users to the director CESRUD and the board, director of FAVL the FAVL team and all who supports reading around the world.
The renovated Gowrie-Kunkua community library was officially inaugurated on the 29th of May 2021 at the library premises by the executive director of CESRUD, Mr. Rex Asanga. It will be recalled that on the 10th of May 2020, the entire roofing of the Gowrie-Kunkua community library was blown off by a strong wind storm. The unfortunate incident was brought to FAVL attention and was swiftly responded to. FAVL made a donation for the renovation work to kick start and added more funds to get the work completed. We say a big thank you to FAVL.
The inauguration ceremony started in the earlier hours of the day inside the library hall, the chief and elders of the Kunkua community, together with other people of the community with children came out in their good numbers for the ceremony. The Upper East Regional Librarian, Mr. Leslie Kasanga, a representative from the Gowrie-Kunkua Junior High and Primary School, Madam Portia among other people were in attendance.
The ceremony started with an open prayer and a welcome address by the Chairman of the Gowrie-Kunkua library committee, Mr. Donatus Adua who on behalf of the chief and people of Gowrie-Kunkua welcomed everyone for coming to witness and grace the inauguration ceremony. He used the opportunity and thanked CESRUD and FAVL for supporting their community with one of the community libraries. He said since the establishment of the library in their community, a lot of people have passed through the library and today are responsible people in society today. He cited the first librarian of the library, Ayamdoo Jennifer who was present at the inauguration ceremony as an example, through the community library, she is now a nurse by profession, there was another young man there by name Mr. Simon who has also pass through the community library and is also now a professional teacher and many others. He was particularly grateful and thankful to FAVL for coming to the aid of the community when the library roofing was destroyed by the wind storm last year. He was so happy that children and young adults will have the opportunity again to sit at the library and read.
After the welcome address by the chairman, I took my turn and address the gathering about what CESRUD/FAVL was all about, I dealt a little bit on FAVL, touching on its mission and vision and how CESRUD and FAVL came into being. Touching on the unfortunate destruction of the library roofing last year, I told the chief and people of the community that when the news got to FAVL, they were shocked by the terrible news and in no time they mobilize some funds and sent to us to get the renovation work started as soon as possible. In a meeting with the library committee prior to the start of the work, they assured us that the community was going to contributed monies and mobilize labor to support the work. But along the line the contribution from the community was not as expected and the entire work largely was shouldered by FAVL our main donor. Efforts were made to get the two assemblies (Bolgatanga Municipal and Bongo district Assemblies) to support, letters were sent to these assemblies with updates of the happenings that befell the library at the time and the cost of the renovation work to be done, to our sad disappointment we did not get any response from them up to date.
I emphasized to the chief and people that in instances like what happened to the library last year our friend and partner FAVL expects dedicated commitment from the community towards the work to be done, in fact that is one of the ways FAVL operates, in other words they expect any community they are working with to be actively involved in the running and maintenance of the libraries and so anytime there are incidents of this nature among others, people should be ready and willingly to support. I use the opportunity to thank all the people especially the youth who supported in moving the library properties to the nearby house for temporal keeping, I also acknowledge the efforts of the youth and all the people who were always present to ensure that the work goes on till it’s completion.
The chief (Naba Adua) on his part was particularly happy and grateful to FAVL working through CESRUD for giving his community one of the community libraries and the support they have given to the library up to date. He said together with his people they are very happy that their children have a place to go and read whenever they want to read and learn and that he and his people will help their children to make good use of the library. He was elated that the renovation work was completed and that children can now sit in the library again and learn.
The queen mother (wife of the chief) on her part was happy and thankful to CESRUD/FAVL Ghana for the great work done. She admonished her colleague women to ensure that they support their children to visit the library and make good use of the place. They should channel all their energies and resources in supporting the education of their children.
The Upper East Regional Librarian on his part was very happy that the library was ‘back to its feet’ and looking more beautiful than the way it was first, he told the gathering how the Ghana Library Authority is working with the Assemblies to take over the management of the libraries after CESRUD/FAVL Ghana approached his outfit. He admitted things has been very slow on their part but assured that his outfit will be doing something about the management and maintenance of all community libraries in the Region. He tasked parents to support and encourage their children to always visit the library because reading makes a man as they say and that a reading nation is a winning nation.
The director of CESRUD/FAVL Ghana, Mr. Rex Asanga taken his turn to address the people thank the chief and his people for coming out in their good numbers for the inauguration ceremony. He touched on how CESRUD was started, it’s mission and vision, and how CESRUD and FAVL came together and established the three community libraries. He recounted how their time when he was a child, they use to walk several kilometers away to the Upper East Regional library which was the only library in the Region by then to read and walk back home, it was not easy, all his prayer and wish was that if God Almighty help him to progress in his education, he will do something about it. So he happy to have played a role in the establishment of the community libraries. He wish the libraries would have been more than the three libraries we have currently but governments of the day in Ghana have not been supportive to brilliant idea of community libraries, that is why the libraries are still three in Ghana. He cited in Burkina Faso, the community libraries there are many because their local governments or mayors bought into the idea of the libraries. He admonished the chief and his people that it is high time they change the narrative of always waiting and expecting assistance from elsewhere, it is time everyone rise up and always play his part to support every social intervention that is in the community like the community library and any other project that will be coming to their community. They should always be involved in supporting in the running and maintenance of the library. He thanked the community for their contribution towards the renovations work, however he told the gathering he was not happy with the contribution from the community towards the renovation of the library, he expected more from them than what they did, he told them parts of the works is yet to be done, they should be willing to still contribute to finished up the work when they are being called upon.
The director encourage the pupils and students to make good use of the library, they should spent much time in the library reading. Reading at all times will help them improve upon their reading ability, writing skills and they stand a better chance to excel in their education if they know how to read.
The Honorable Assembly Man of the community Mr. Donald Abongo who was very instrumental in the renovation work of the library expressed his heart felt gratitude to FAVL for the enormous support given to their community, he also thanked the director of CESRUD and the libraries Coordinator for their efforts and roles played in the renovation of the library. He told the gathering, as an Assemble Man it is not easy handling people in this part of the world but he is going to liaise with the library committee, the chief and his elders to get the people to contribute towards the rest of the remaining works.
The director of CESRUD/FAVL Ghana after all was said and done announced to all the gathering that the renovated Gowrie-Kunkua community library was officially duly inaugurated on the 29th day of May 2021, he then ceremoniously hands over to the Upper East Regional Librarian, who also in a ceremonious manner handed it to the chief of the community for proper care and maintenance. It was an awesome ceremony!
On behalf of the executive director of CESRUD/FAVL Ghana, the Chief and people of Gowrie-Kunkua community, I wish to extend our sincere appreciation to FAVL, SUN STONE MAMAS who shouldered almost all the renovation cost. We grateful to, the smiles you have putting in the faces of the children of the Gowrie-Kunkua community would shine to the higher height.
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: This is the end of month report with details of happenings in the three community libraries. The month begun well with lots of interesting library’s activities in all three community libraries. The respective librarians were at post making sure that everything went on well. At the Sumbrungu Community Library, attendance to the library was very great with exciting activities. Basic pupils and students from the surrounding schools to the library were the frequent users of the library during the day time, and the night time was also well patronized by students and pupils from far and near, the University students also visited the library and learned. I took part in fixing a puzzle and it took us quite some time before we finally got it fixed. Students of St. Charles Lwanga JHS continued with their reading project to cultivate the habit of reading in students. At the Sherigu Community Library, attendance to the library for the month was good. Frequent visitors to the library during the daytime were pupils and Students St. Peter and Paul Academy. The librarian held a number of group readings with patrons on different storybooks and it was awesome. At the Gowrie-Kunkua Community Library, patronage for the first week of the month was quite good. Patronage picked up somehow better in the third week throughout to this week, reason being that the renovation works were completed. In conclusions the three community libraries in Ghana are helping in shaping and cultivating the reading habit in the rural Africa child.
From Paul Ayutoliya: The setting or rearrangement of shelves, books, tables and chairs in the library had been completed. Even before we set a date for the inauguration of the library, some students and pupils have started visiting the library with great excitement, they are happy that at long last the library renovations works had been done and the library is looking more beautiful and spacious than the former. So reading in the library have since started.
The executive director of CESRUD, Mr. Rex has asked that I contact the library committee so that we set a date for the inauguration of the library, he asked that we invite the chiefs and elders of the Gowrie-Kunkua community, the Assembly Men, some official from the Bongo District Assembly and representative from the Bolgatanga Municipal Assembly, the Upper East Regional Librarian, and other interested partners to the inauguration ceremony, the idea is to get these people involved in the running and management of the Gowrie-Kunkua community library and perhaps the other two libraries. And so hopefully come next week, we should get this done and formally open the library to the public.
From Paul Ayutoliya: This is a summarized report of the librarians’ April report with the statistics of patronage. All librarians reported that the month of April started and ended well with lots of interesting activities. The Sumbrungu librarian reports that attendance to the library for April was very great. The month’s activities were; group reading, spelling of words, debates, storytelling and video shows among others. He touched on the extension of the Sumbrungu library work. At the Sherigu Community library, the librarian reports also of good attendance to the library and some interesting activities that took place during the month such as reading and storytelling. Patronage after vacation of the basic pupils were a little low especially during the day time. At the Gowrie-Kunkua Community Library, the librarian reports that patronage was quite good for the month. He touched on the painting works that had been completed and setting of the library underway.
The statistics of attendances recorded by the librarians for April 2021 is below;
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: This is a report for the month of April 2021 which captures all happenings that took place in the three community libraries that are supported by FAVL through CESRUD under my supervision. The month begun well with good patronage to the community libraries with lots of exciting and interesting library’s activities and other happenings. At the Sumbrungu community library, attendance to the library for the month was very impressive and encouraging. A majority of the patronage was from the nearby schools and Bolgatanga Technical University. The extension works are well underaway and are partly completed. At the Sherigu community library, patronage for the month was quite good. . The librarian was always at her post in the library making sure that everything is done orderly. After the vacation, the number of patrons visiting the library reduced a little due to issues with distance. The evening times were very good as students from the surrounding communities do visited the library well and prepared for their exams. At the Gowrie-Kunkua community library patronage was standard but still not to the usual level. The painting works are completed and the furniture has been returned, while we still work on the ceiling and electrical work. We hope to inaugurate the library in May. In conclusion, the month of April fared well with lots interesting activities and other good developments in the tree community libraries. As we move into the month of May, we optimistic of great and more interesting library activities. On behalf of the leadership of CESRUD and the executive director and my able librarians and our cherished library users, I extend our sincere appreciations and thanks for the enormous support from FAVL.
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: The painting work began today and we are hoping by close of tomorrow next, all painting works will be completed. The shelves and books will be move into the library as soon as the painting is done. We appreciate all the tireless support given to the Gowrie-Kunkua community so far with regards to the renovation works.
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: I’m happy to share with you that the Jordan Nu community library has since been reopened early last month (March) after my engagement with the committee via phone communication early this year. Madam Mercy, the librarian I understand is still the librarian in charge of the library. Just want to update you briefly that the library has since been reopened and is functioning. The library premises and inside the library hall are looking very conducive and well arranged for library’s activities.
This is a summarized report of the librarians’ March report with the statistics recorded. The three librarians report that the month started and ended well with lots of interesting activities at their respective community libraries. The Sumbrungu librarian reported on the 71 boxes of books that were received from Biblionef Ghana and distributed to 22 basics schools in Sumbrungu and Nyariga communities. The problems captured in his report were inadequate furniture and text books in the library. At the Sherigu Community library, the librarian reports also of good attendance to the library and some interesting activities that took place during the month. Among the activities were group reading, individual reading, storytelling and sewing of some more books. At the Gowrie-Kunkua Community Library, the librarian reports that patronage was quite good for the month. Some activities during the included quiz competition, games, picture drawing and others. He reports on the plastering works that have been completed and flooring works underway in the library, which are progressing well.
Paul Ayuretoliya writes: This is a report for the month of March 2021. Patronage to the respective three community libraries was very good. A number of Senior High Schools students who were on vacation made good use of the respective community libraries. Pupils from surrounding schools to the libraries were always the most frequent users of the libraries. At the Sumbrungu Community Library, attendance to the library for the month was very high. Frequent users of the library were the local students from all levels of education. All these users read different kinds of story books, notes from their schools, some worked mathematics, others studied science and much more. St. Charles Lwanga JHS, one of the surrounding school to the Sumbrungu Community Library proposed to undertake a reading project after the training for School library teachers held last year by Biblionef Ghana. The project were to take place at the Sumbrungu community library. The project was dabbed ‘Developing Reading Culture among students of St. Charles Lwanga Junior High School’. The objective of the project was to see that students developed a sustained interest in the usage of the library. So on every Monday and Wednesday of every week the library receives students from St. Charles JHS. During the month, books donated by Biblionef Ghana were distributed to 22 basic schools in Sumbrungu and Nyariga communities to promote reading. At the Sherigu community library, attendance to the library for the month was also great and good. The number of patrons recorded appears to be more than that of last month attendance. Activities at the library for the month were group reading, individual reading and/or learning, cleanup exercise, sewing of some books among others. At the Gowrie-Kunkua community library, attendance was quite good. Though the number of patrons recorded were low, patronage is expected to increase as the renovations near completion. In conclusion, CESRUD/FAVL Ghana community libraries performed very well in March. We are optimistic of greater performance in this next month of April .Thank you.