The African Library Project relies on trusted partner organizations and local leaders who are on the ground to help fulfill ALP’s mission. We are proud to partner with capable and hardworking organizations and individuals who are dedicated to promoting literacy and library development in sub-Saharan Africa. It’s the work of these dedicated partners who ensure that the donated books are received in country and make it to each library recipient – no matter how far. Additionally, it is our trusted partners who vet and select each library recipient, provide Teacher-Librarian training, encourage and share library best practices, and assist in evaluating the use of libraries. These partners are essential to ALP’s approach and mission.
The Botswana Ministry of Education and Skills Development (BMOESD) is the official government body responsible for public education in Botswana. The BMOESD provides pre-primary, primary, secondary, vocational, tertiary, and special education through its schools located throughout the country. Its mission is to provide relevant, efficient, and quality education and training that is accessible to all. In 2010, the Ministry de-centralized its administrative structure, giving more authority to its twelve regional district offices.
Michael Lapsley Foundation (Ghana)
The Michael Lapsley Foundation (MLF) is a registered non-governmental organization (NGO) that was established in March 2004. The Foundation’s work centers on community and rural library support, humanitarian donations, and advocacy and education for the disabled. Its mission is “to improve the quality of life of the underprivileged by addressing their educational and social development needs through the provision of resources, information and training.” MLF works in partnership with Members of Parliament, Metropolitan Municipal District Assemblies, Traditional Authorities, and corporate institutions who sponsor libraries in communities across Ghana.
Rongo University and Kibabii University (Kenya)
Rongo University and Kibabii University are public universities located in Migori County and Bungoma County, respectively. Both universities provide high-quality education through teaching, research, and community service. They support local communities in their vicinity in a number of ways including promoting economic activities in rural areas as a means of improving livelihoods. Promoting the development of school and community libraries, for example situated in farmers cooperatives and hospitals, furthers their mission to educate and empower.
Lesotho believes in combating its poverty through education. Since introducing free primary education, the Ministry of Education and Training (MOET) is focused on ensuring education is accessible to all. Initiatives associated with free access to primary education include providing textbooks and writing materials for primary school children and allowing secondary school students to borrow books. Other initiatives include integrating students with special needs into the school system and requiring that equal, quality education be given to all students.
US Peace Corps Lesotho (Lesotho)
There are currently more than 130 volunteers serving in Peace Corps Lesotho. Over 2,480 Americans have served as Peace Corps volunteers in Lesotho since 1967. Volunteers in this Sub-Saharan African nation work in the fields of education, community health, and economic development. Lesotho Peace Corps Volunteers work with schools and communities in their areas to facilitate the African Library Project application process and set up the library management system, i.e. library committee. Peace Corps volunteers train local teachers on how to use books as resources for their classes, incorporate reading into their curriculum, organize their library, and care for the books. The African Library Project’s first library was in Lesotho.
DAPP Malawi was established in 1995 by Humana People to People, an international development organization. DAPP is a large NGO with a number of major projects in Malawi which focus on fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic, fighting hunger through farmer education, vocational skills training, and teacher training for rural primary schools. It raises money to support its projects by selling used clothing and books, items that are in short supply in Malawi. In 2002, DAPP established a teacher training college in the Blantyre rural district. The 2.5-year teaching course uses a child-centered learning approach, producing teachers who are creative, rich in the initiative, innovative, and eager to develop their rural school and community. DAPP’s work with the African Library Project is done through its teacher training college.
Wungwero Book Foundation (WBF) (Malawi)
The Wungwero Book Foundation is a small nongovernmental organization based in southern Malawi. WBF was started by two professional librarians who happen to be brother-in-laws. Both dreamed of bringing books to the rural areas of Malawi, a task too ambitious for the government to address. WBF reached out to other NGOs in Malawi that were interested in library development and ended up forming a coalition of organizations to work with the African Library Project.
Malawi Institute of Education (MIE) (Malawi)
The Malawi Institute of Education (MIE) is a parastatal organization, which means it is managed partially by the government and partially through nongovernmental efforts. MIE was established in 1982 with the goal of improving and maintaining the quality of education in Malawi. It is responsible for developing curriculum, helping with the training and development of teachers, and organizing the distribution of required learning materials to schools in Malawi.
University of Malawi, Chancellor College Library (Malawi)
The University of Malawi is the largest of the four government-run colleges in Malawi. Located in southern Malawi, the University of Malawi Library supports the teaching, learning and research of the university’s students and faculty by lending library materials and providing research assistance, computer access, and training. The library staff actively works to put books into the hands of Malawian primary and secondary students through their partnership with the African Library Project.
lisika unite foundation (South Africa)
Lisika Unite foundation is a Limpopo province rural community-based literacy and Arts organization founded in 2017, and successfully registered in 2018 with the Department of Social development, Company intellectual property (CIPC) and South African Revenue Services as a public benefit organization. The organization is dedicated to strengthening partnership within civil society and between government in order to achieve South African’s national goals for basic education.
enjuba works to lift Ugandans out of poverty by improving literacy and fostering key life skills such as collaboration, communication and critical thinking among children. enjuba uses teacher training, spelling bees, Afro-centric children’s book publishing, and library development to achieve its mission. “enjuba” is a Luganda word that means “the sun.” It was chosen as the name to serve as a symbol of hope for the new generation.
Firm Foundation Education Trust (FFET) (Uganda)
Firm Foundation Education Trust (FFET) is a grassroots (CBO) Community Based Organization (CBO) based in the economically challenged West Nile Region of Uganda. FFET focuses on promoting literacy by helping to establish school libraries and organizing reading activities. They work closely with headteachers at local schools and district education offices.
Biennial ALP Summit
Every other year, ALP and the partners of one of the active countries co-hosts a weeklong international best practice, Summit. The event is an essential opportunity for the partners and core volunteers to gather to strategize on how to strengthen library work. Several activities are organized around the goal of developing and sharing best practices for sustaining library operations, creating reading cultures, and improving literacy outcomes.
Partner organizations train local teacher-librarians on effective library management practices and help create a support network for continued learning. The African Library Project’s library manual How to Set Up and Run a Small Library in Africa forms the basis of this training, and each new teacher-librarian is provided with their own hardcopy. The manual contains complete guidelines on library set-up and organization, borrowing systems, how to encourage library use, reading games for children, and more.