Books Are Power - Expansion into Uganda

Gary Muldoon, Ephas Ongong’o – Books Are Power – Expansion into Uganda

Date grant awarded: March 2019

The mission of Books Are Power is to create a culture of literacy and empower African kids – the next generation of parents, entrepreneurs & leaders – by establishing libraries and computer labs in primary schools. Since our founding in 2014, Books Are Power has established 14 libraries and 2 computer labs. Our libraries serve over 6,000 students and faculty and our computer labs serve over 1,000 students. We currently have projects in progress in Kenya, The Gambia and Ghana.

Unlike many European and Asian countries, The United States, Canada, Australia and other developed countries, most African kids have very little or no access to library books. Research shows that school libraries have many positive impacts including improved reading test scores, higher academic achievement, and positive attitudes towards learning. With so many used library books available for donation, why not level the playing field somewhat by getting those books into the hands of African kids? That’s the mission of Books Are Power!

Books Are Power’s initial seed grant allowed us ship additional books to Valley View Academy in the Mathare slum area of Nairobi, Kenya. The grant prompted us to incorporate as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Most importantly, we were introduced to other TPP grantees with projects based in Africa. We have partnered with several of these grantees on projects!

Books Are Power knows through our interaction with our African partners that we are having a positive impact in the communities we serve. Our success in Kenya has prompted requests by several schools to establish libraries in neighboring Uganda. This impact award allows us to begin our first library project in Uganda!

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