“Shivana and Rumana are teenage sisters from Delhi, India who use the Read to Kids app on their mobile phone to read stories to children in their community. Every afternoon, 8-15 children from the neighbourhood are invited to the sisters’ home for their reading sessions.
By reading to the children and getting the parents involved, the sisters are helping the children improve in school.”
That’s from the WorldReader Annual Report summary.
Those of you living in the rich First World where access to education and books are taken for granted cannot begin to understand how truly life-changing smartphones and the internet are for the rest of the world where access to books has been an unaffordable luxury for all but the lucky few.
Little children like these, that even five years ago had almost zero chance of ever seeing a book, are now discovering and enjoying the delights of reading.
Here’s two more impact stories from the WorldReader annual report.
I’ve been teaching English at Magoso Primary for 5 months now. Teaching is something that I’ve always known I wanted to do.
When I joined the school, no one would use the school library. When the e-readers came in, everyone wanted to use them so more children started coming to the library. Now every evening the library in the school is full. That makes me feel like I have done something, however small. I go to bed with a smile on my face.”
My town, Naivasha, has one of the biggest prisons in the country – Naivasha Maximum Prison – which has an education centre with over 1,500 inmates undergoing primary and secondary school education. Last week, we visited the prison with the e-readers and trained over 100 inmates and prison officers. That day, they begged us not to leave so they could read more! I have always wanted to be an instrument of change and I am glad to be serving my community as a librarian.
We are witnesses to, and as content-providers participants in, an event quite unprecedented in human history.
The Global New Renaissance.
Happening right now on a planet near you.