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Creating a Community Library and Resource Centre in Nairobi, Kenya

Requested by

International Transformation Foundation (ITF)

Who are you trying to help? What issue are you trying to address?

The Kahawa West Community in Nairobi is home to 40,000 people with widely separate and diverse interests, backgrounds, cultural heritage, social values, and needs. They all, however, have limited access to basic socioeconomic support and opportunity despite some progress recently in regard to road development. The combined effect of poverty, geography and general lack of development also prevents people, particularly young men and women and low caste groups from accessing quality education.

There is a lack of educational provision and resources in the area. Approximately 25% of the total population is illiterate. The adult illiteracy rate (51%) is particularly alarming. In addition, gender inequality is profound with only one-quarter of all women being minimally literate, a phenomenon which exacerbates poverty and underdevelopment.

We want to do something about this by creating a community library and resource centre which will provide opportunities for people to have access to books and other educational material and thus help in reducing illiteracy and encouraging education and a love of reading.

What is your project and how will it help?

I. Project Description

ITF Community Library & Resource Centre will be a catalyst for community development and continuing education. The Centre will operate as a hub and will provide a welcoming and comfortable environment for the community. It will provide a one stop resource, information and learning centre for the people, with a variety of services including: book displays, reading, lending, free computer training, and a venue for topical issues debates.

II. Project Purpose, Vision and Goals

Ensuring that the services are at the heart of the community’s needs and providing equal access to all services and maintaining our ‘Open to All’ policy. The ITF Youth Public Library & Resource Centre’s objective is:

1. To promote and develop reading as a pleasurable activity to stimulate the imagination and encourage creativity

2. To provide opportunities and resources for lifelong learning, training and educational achievement

3. To facilitate informal self−education, and contribute towards the raising of standards in the essential basic skills of literacy and numeracy

4. To provide, and encourage the use of ICT to enable access to digital skills and services

5. To continuously improve collection and training to meet the immediate needs of the community and to provide a solid foundation for future development.


1. Up-skilling of residents, thus improving their employability
2. Financial well-being and economic value to individual
3. Economic benefit to local businesses
4. The prosperity of the community
5. Job, career and business resources particularly for small businesses
6. Indirect economic impacts that will benefit individuals in the community
7. Civic involvement
8. Access to financial information, computer technology and services, educational support for the community, and support for Public services,
9. Books and other formats available without cost; educational support on every level; and enhancement of other public services (Government and social programmes).

How can other people partner with you on your project?

Everyone is invited. We are looking for partners who can provide any of the following:

1. Financial support (most needed for library set up)

2. Materials and equipment support such as books, computers and other useful materials in a community library.

3. Provision and facilitation of training

4. Human Resource (volunteers)

Please detail the resources that you need.

We need investment of US$7,172

Please see details in the attached document.

Further information

Contact details

Only organisations who have exchanged contact details may view this.


Partnership types

Project funding; Provision of services / personnel; Provision of goods

Regions / countries / territories

Africa: Kenya

Global issues

Children, youth and family welfare; Community development; Education and training; all (5)


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