A very positive start to 2013 for the Lubuto Library Project

I arrived back in Lusaka a few weeks ago, and since then have been caught up in a whirlwind of Lubuto activity! It is a very busy but very exciting time. My role with Lubuto has been developed, so I will now be spending time in both of the libraries in Lusaka. This will allow me to gain a wider understanding of the way that the libraries work and the people that we serve. By communicating this information between Lubuto staff members, we will ensure that the needs of our communities are central to the development of all Lubuto Library services.

Last weekend saw the third performance in the LubutoDrama program. I was privileged to attend performances at both Fountain of Hope Lubuto Library and Ngwerere Lubuto Library. Both performances were very different, but the thing that struck me about both was how much the young people involved learnt from the experience, and how much confidence they gained from the opportunity to perform. I also realised how much the audience members enjoyed the chance to watch the play. Theatre in Zambia is far more participative than in the UK and it was a real party atmosphere! For some of these children it is the first time that they have ever been able to experience any form of drama, and it was clear how much they valued it. It was particularly nice to see the girls at the Fountain of Hope Lubuto Library stepping into the limelight as they presented the story of Rosa Parks.

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Yesterday I spent my first full day at Ngwerere Lubuto Library and was touched by the welcome I received there, from staff and children. I was introduced to the members of the LubutoMentoring group and immediately afterwards was swamped with young people asking me questions about myself. I spent a full morning reading aloud – so much so that my voice began to crack and I decided I needed a rest. Luckily I had taken a gift of the game ‘Snakes and Ladders’ for the library, so this offered me a bit of respite! I look forward to going back and developing relationships there.

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About Lubuto Library Blog

A Lubuto library is a special place designed for street kids and other marginalized children and youth in Africa. In the safe haven of the library, children can look at books, be read to and read for themselves. They can develop their talents and express themselves through the visual and performing arts, or communicate and learn with OLPC laptops. They can receive mentoring and guidance and participate in programs on health and the environment. Lubuto libraries open the world to children with no opportunities, allowing them to explore their heritage and learn about others through varied and enriching library programs.
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