Your Child, Reading, and You

Recognizing that family and community engagement are vital for children to develop basic reading skills, the NGO Oeuvre Malienne d’Aide a l'Enfance du Sahel (OMAES) is working to boost community engagement and increase access to reading materials in the Ségou region of Mali. Participating villages will establish community libraries to act as hubs for family literacy activities, to provide support to families, and to house new reading materials. OMAES is a grantee of USAID's All Children Reading: A Grand Challenge for Development, implemented by World Vision.

Mali has witnessed an increase in parental involvement in education broadly. But family-based support to children reading is struggling to keep pace. The "Your Child, Reading, and You" project will provide communities with additional literacy resources — books and electronic reading materials — and will provide families with the tools and support they need to help children improve their reading skills. To ensure broad community engagement, Village Parent Associations and youth volunteer librarians will work together with OMAES to establish and operate the community libraries. Youth librarians, in turn, will collaborate with community members to develop literacy activities for families and children. In some villages, the youth librarians will also work with families to identify and create stories that will be transformed into digital books using the Stepping Stone mobile application. Village libraries will host family literacy events and serve as resource centers, offering books, access to digital stories, and support to families.
  • Create a space where families can access reading materials and participate in literacy activities
  • Collect and distribute reading materials for families to support reading readiness
  • Improve reading scores among primary school students

Establish village libraries

Community-supported village libraries will provide literacy activities to families. Libraries will be stocked with leveled books and in certain villages will also offer tablet computers for check out.

Train youth volunteer librarians

Youth librarians will receive training to operate the village libraries, lead literacy activities, and gather local stories that will be transformed into digital books using the Stepping Stone application.