We saw a great need to address the lack of access to study spaces in the slums where each household living in a one-roomed house has an average of 6 - 7 family members. This one room is where the parents and children sleep, cook, sit and even do their homework. Children hence really suffer when they are studying due to constant interruptions, which affect their concentration and overall performance in education.
To address this need and through our "LIBU MTAANI PROJECT" which means "community libraries" in Swahili, we are establishing safe community library spaces for young people in the slums and rural areas. In addition to having books, the community libraries are being fitted with computers for digital practical learning to encourage and train young people on technology and innovation training and incubation solution hubs.
The safe community library spaces will target children between 7 - 18 years. The community innovation and technology solution hubs will target young people between 18 - 24 years.
We are partnering with local community-based organizations and organized groups to make the library project(s) sustainable and foster ownership. Hence older younger adults who are members of the community organizations are trained to become librarians, space managers, and tutors.
The tutors from these areas will be trained so that they can, in turn, teach the younger age groups on the use of digital technology platforms that will mainly encompass the use of computers.
With broader partnerships with organizations that foster technological solutions some of the young people who go through this community spaces/hubs will eventually:
- Establish their own start-ups with localized solutions and earn from them.
- Contribute to the African and global tech solution talent.
- Connected to industry players in technology for placement.
In the next three years by the year 2022, we aim to have established 10 model safe community library spaces/hubs across slums in major towns/cities in Kenya and in marginalized rural communities across Kenya.
We are currently mapping existing spaces to set up or unused shipping containers that can be transformed into safe community library models.
Each model space will be solar powered for sustainability.