The Education Development Center (EDC), an international NGO based in the US, is helping to establish at least 80 mobile libraries in Rwanda. The project aims to address the alarming lack of reading materials in the country and is expected to be completed by 2016.
The project falls under the Rwanda Literacy, Language, and Learning Initiative (L3), an organization which aims to improve education in Rwanda between grades one and four. L3 focuses primarily on increasing math and reading scores. The initiative aims to make reading and math instructional materials available, and to strengthen English language skills through interactive audio programs. L3 is expected to reach approximately 1.5 million students and nearly 30,000 teachers, while offering one million new teaching and learning materials to Rwandan schools.
The libraries will largely consist of three booths–for children, teenagers, and adults. The booths will provide reading material of varying difficulty and genres in order to suit all abilities and interests. Genres will include: classic European literature, an African writer’s series, and locally-authored storybooks. All books in the library are reviewed and selected by the L3 group. Local teachers will help other community members in selecting appropriate books and reading them.
Cyuru in Gicumbi district will be the first community to receive mobile libraries. The theme of the regional initiative states: ”Let’s read! A person who doesn’t read is like a field left untilled.”
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