Deepalaya Community Library and Reading Project
Books, they say, are the best companions. Deepalaya, over these 35 years of existence, has always motivated children to read books. Each and every school/learning centre has been equipped with a library. However, these have always been accessible to school students.
Thanks to Gitanjali, Michael and Mridula Koshy, who thought of a Deepalaya Library and Reading Project involving community participation. The project has been running in one form or another since 2008. In the beginning, an after-school Reading Club served 10-20 Deepalaya students; the ‘Library’ ran out of a book bag. Space had always been a constraint. Later on, space was found for a larger collection in a classroom cupboard.
During 2010-11, students and parents, and volunteers from the American Embassy School worked with Deepalaya School staff to build a library in a small room in the school.
Teachers at Deepalaya School received training in reading out aloud to younger children. All children were enrolled in the school library with the addition of a weekly library period in the school timetable.
The Reading Project has grown – from a dozen or even fewer students in the beginning to over 500 who regularly visit the library for borrowing books and getting them reissued.
Twelve new volunteers have been trained and with the four volunteers already in place there are now 36 volunteers either directly reading stories to children or doing maintenance and upkeep of the library.
With Mridula Koshy taking up a larger role, the library has become a full time affair, gradually taking the form of a “movement” encompassing siblings, parents, and community, who can now use the library at their will and convenience.
We look forward to your support in person by volunteering, donating books or providing resources. All the efforts shall bring forth tangible results and shall make the library movement a community affair.
Your donation shall give this movement a renewed momentum, capable of bringing a changing in those tech-savvy children, youth and people who have lost their best companion aka books to smart phones and laptops.
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