Namanya Memorial community Library Uganda is located in Nansana, Katooke A, Wakiso district. The decision to start the library was inspired by their late father to help vulnerable communities and give back to the community. Starting the library was a way of honouring his legacy. Serving between 10 to 20 children in a day, the library welcomes everyone from the community. Libraries are most active in holidays and weekends with regular and un regular users.
“Community libraries are very important especially in communities with very low literacy levels” Amy Ampaire, Community Librarian at Namanya Memorial Community Library. Having community libraries is one way we can reach out to different communities in order to impart the literacy skills to them to contribute to fighting illiteracy. At Namanya community library they have story books for children, fiction for both teenage and adults, curriculum. They are in the process of adding educative games to the collection.
The major challenge in community libraries today is the lack of space, lack of training in library management and financial challenges to acquire skilled man power and run the library consistently. Imagine a community library with skilled personnel to carry out outreach with books, read to children, ability to communicate effectively and efficiently with local leaders, teachers and parents to encourage more library usage – the illiteracy gaps would easily be covered and more numbers reached through different reading programs.
Article by: Emmanuel Anguyo, Coordinator Community Libraries Association of Uganda
Lutex Community Library located in Mukono municipality 50 meters on Kayunga/Bugerere road is houses a total of 1,600 books mostly vocational and leisure reading books for children. It opens from Monday to Saturday starting 7:30am-5:30pm. It is run by its founder, Fred Lukyamuzi Musoke, a determined, skilled and professional vocational trainer. The library is managed by 2 staff and 1 volunteer. “The library is going to grow over time and is a place where you can get all information, you go places because of the library and the information we access,” says Fred Lukyamuzi Musoke. Lukyamuzi mentions that they shall be expanding the library to the new site since they are still in the rented space. Their target is to be able to accommodate all types of users of the library. Currently the adults share the space with the kids and emphasis are to design a children’s corner specifically to children. They participated in the recently concluded UgCLA conference and learnt from their colleagues running community libraries.
Nyarushanje Community Library and Empowerment centre in Rukungiri district had its reading promotion program on 15/7/2022, hosting school children and out-of-school children, and distributing reading certificates to participants.
Youth Corps Learning Centre community library celebrated the D. E. A. R day with a number of children, youth and adults who came and dropped everything and read together. Some did personal reading and others where in groups.
Holy cross Mission orthodox hospital – Namungoona staff and patients joined in the D. E. A. R. day activities. According to Ms. Gider Nalubega the Executive director, reading has therapeutic effects and has brought us together. Reading from “Black Beauty” has made every one’s day.
This has been an incredible month, partnering with 5 schools to deliver 348 books; Mpumu primary school had the largest share of books while children at Alpha view primary school and St. Consolanta primary school had the highest participation (98%). We are grateful to the team and generous funders who keep this program running.
Because of UgCLA, we are able to conduct our mobile library in the community schools using the books and other materials you donated to us. Thanks for being part of our children’s future because the future belongs to them. Leticia Mbabazi, Librarian – MLISADA community Library,Uganda.