In Rwanda as in many other countries in Africa, Illiteracy and access to teaching and learning materials for learners with and without disabilities, teachers, and families is often a barrier to inclusive and equitable quality education. The learning outcome is still low among children at primary levels in the community. Over 20,000 children with disabilities are out of school or not getting access to education from the National Council of Persons with Disabilities survey conducted in 2020, limiting utilization of reading material in Sign Language and Braille.
For this reason, In September 2022 during the National Literacy Month, eKitabu Rwanda held the Umuganda Literacy event in Ruhango District, Southern Province, Rwanda in collaboration with Rwandan schools, youth volunteers, peer educators, community libraries, and local village leaders, hosting over 300 audiences of children and adults with and without disabilities.
“We are happy to have the first Literacy Umuganda in our community. This has been an exciting and special kind of event gathering. Thank you eKitabu for coordinating, planning, and engaging children with and without disabilities and bringing to light the inclusivity in literacy. The reading session has been amazing.” Mukangoga Providence, Library Officer, Ruhango Community Library.
The Umuganda Literacy is an eKitabu initiative held quarterly in the year and targets children with and without disabilities at primary levels, families, librarians, youth volunteers with disabilities, and community education workers in Rwanda. It aims at creating awareness of reading, literacy, and inclusivity in the community and promoting the involvement of all children.
“Previously we used to take storybooks to children at their homes and engage them in a reading session. Umuganda Literacy focuses on gathering all children with and without disabilities to read accessible reading resources at the community library. It’s more fun reading storybooks together especially the ones that engage children with disabilities.” Iragena Jean Luc, Peer Educator, Ruhango Community Library.
The Umuganda Literacy by eKitabu takes place in the community libraries of Ruhango, Burera, Kirehe, Ngororero, and Gasabo districts in the northern, southern, eastern, and western provinces of Rwanda. eKitabu delivers accessible digital content and innovative programs for inclusive and quality education. The educational impact of learning materials is our foundation and on that proven foundation, we innovate, designing with users and partners from the public and private sectors—to increase accessibility and lower cost for inclusive and equitable quality education for all.