As many who are familiar with Rwanda know, the last Saturday of every month is Umuganda, when all people countrywide work together in their communities. While cleaning is a famous and regular Umuganda activity, other activities to improve communities and the nation happen too. In collaboration with community libraries under Kigali Public Library, since June 2022 our team has organized quarterly Umuganda Literacy events to engage children with and without disabilities and their families in reading together.
This month we are holding an Umuganda Literacy event in Musanze, following the last one we organized in April in Kigali at Kabuga Yego Center Community Library with Uwezo Youth Empowerment, an organization of persons with disabilities dedicated to improving the opportunities and lives of Rwandan persons with disabilities.
Feedback and encouragement we have received from Umuganda Literacy activities:
“Previously we had to take storybooks to children in their homes to try to engage them. Umuganda Literacy gathers all children with and without disabilities together in reading at the library.” Iragena Jean Luc, Peer Educator, Ruhango Community Library.
“At the start of the reading session, I felt scared, but along the way, I became confident to read. Children should be courageous, come to the library often, and read books there.” A 12-year-old boy who participated in Umuganda Literacy.
“We are happy to have the first Umuganda Literacy in our community. This has been an exciting and special kind of gathering. Engaging children with and without disabilities is bringing inclusivity to light in literacy.” Mukangoga Providence, Library Officer, Ruhango Community Library.
We thank Kigali Public Library and the individual librarians who have worked with us across Rwanda for their energy, ideas, and relationships that are making Umuganda Literacy come to life.