A new Library Borrowing system to promote a culture of reading among Ugandan students

In February, 2012, URF purchased over 1,000 new textbooks for the community library at Hope Academy. In this article, volunteers, Jessica and Jehan share updates on the process of cataloging all the books and creating a borrowing system. We hope the revamped library will foster a culture of reading and ultimately improve the quality of education for kids in rural schools.

Hope Library Update

A definite sense of accomplishment was felt when we officially launched our new borrowing system, and held library orientation for all 4 classes of Hope Academy.  We now have school borrowing cards and borrowing lists, library markers, a returns box! There are subject categories which follow a basic dewey system, and better still – students know how to use it!

Prior to this, lending books was a haphazard activity involving a dilapidated exercise book which had no easy way of finding a student or book on loan. Students came in wanting a “book” but with no concept of what information they were searching for or question they were trying to answer. This made assisting students and borrowing books a very long, and cumbersome activity, and it was hard not to let out a little groan each time a student walked into the library!

But now things are much rosier! We can find students and books at ease and each student has received a 1 hour orientation where they have learnt about the different parts of the book, the dewey system and the rules of the library. And we have managed to rearrange the library so there is space for the students to actually sit down and read or complete school work.

Session on how to use the new library borrowing system

Now that these changes are a reality, it is so nice to see the library reach a point where it is working! work. And better still, it’s a system that will be easily carried on by the next librarian and live on beyond our departure!

–Jehan and Jessica

Stamping and recording new books


Students with the new books