This post is part of a series of posts highlighting the work of library innovators accepted as Beyond Access Members.
Winner of seven best practice awards celebrating READ Nepal’s 20th Anniversary, the Jhuwani Community Library is a locally-owned library with an emphasis on social inclusion and economic sustainability. It is particularly focused on women’s empowerment as a fundamental aspect of social inclusion, supporting programs in literacy and income generation to promote women’s financial independence and community leadership status. In the future, the library plans to scale its approach to gender equality through improved collaboration with policymakers in the international development community.
Other activities offered by Jhuwani include information sessions on savings and cooperatives, ICTs, and environmentally-friendly consumption, as well as regular health camps and clinics. In addition to applying new technologies through its ICT classes, Jhuwani has even installed a TV for the purpose of telecasting its core programs. It is poised to digitize its reference collection. By joining the Beyond Access cohort, the library hopes to explore the impact of other technology tools and leverage social media to exchange best practices with other library stakeholders.
In an era of increased financial insecurity, Jhuwani prides itself on its stability. Rents from its ambulance service, guest house, mobile tower space, and seminar hall cover program operating costs. Strong partnerships with NGOs and local governmental bodies like the Village Development Committee and District Development Committee provide additional support. We are certain the Beyond Access community will benefit from Jhuwani Community Library’s experience, and are excited they are joining the second cohort of library innovators!