Using Literacy as a Tool for Child Development
-Once a child can read, that child is literate
“Since AfriGrowth Foundation opened a library in my school, I started trying to read with the help of my librarian and now I can read and write easily”
—Adudu of LEA Primary School Dawaki
“Before AfriGrowth Foundation Library Intervention, most of students were unable to handle books not to mention reading, but now they get so excited about the library and it has ensured that students utilize their library time effectively”
—Mr. Kura Emmanuel, Local Education Authority Primary School, Gosa Sarki
Libraries continue to play a major role in fostering literacy, especially for those in need of assistance in developing literacy skills. These sets of people are mostly found in under-served communities. AfriGrowth Foundation believes that a child without good education is indeed a liability to the community (society) and that reading is the foundation of a sound education. Every child must become fully competent in reading to succeed in school and discharge responsibilities as a citizen.
In a bid to improve literacy in Nigeria amongst children, AfriGrowth Foundation, through its Library Literacy Program has raised the standard of literacy in public primary schools in Nigeria. Aimed at primary school children aged between 5 and 13 years, our approach to increase the literacy level of the pupils began with establishments of Libraries in various Local Primary Schools, followed by series of reading activities with the pupils. The children that participate in these reading activities facilitated by AfriGrowth Foundation benefit immensely, as their reading abilities are improved and interest in reading enhanced. This aids significantly in literacy development and in turn encourages children to spend significant amount of time with books. Since the inception of this program in 2012, coupled with the enthusiasm of restoring the culture of reading in the lives of children, AfriGrowth Foundation has established 41 Libraries in Local Education Authority Primary Schools located in FCT Abuja, Nasarawa, Ondo, Kwara and Delta States and donated over 80,000 storybooks; impacting the lives of over 45,000 pupils.
AfriGrowth Foundation periodically organizes reading competitions to assess the impact of the Library Literacy Program in the primary schools. So far, the Foundation has organized four reading competitions. In the course of these reading competition, which is very participatory, AfriGrowth Foundation aims to broaden the academic scope of a new generation of Nigerian children and to help them access the education they need to realize their future ambitions. Pupils participating in the competition are coached in spelling, pronunciation and modulation, using specially developed study guides to build their literacy, cognitive writing and numeracy skills. AfriGrowth Foundation’s team actively volunteers to coach pupils, sharing their enthusiasm and celebrating their progress. Abigail Gabriel Eyiojotule, who came third in the edition of the FCT Reading Competition held on June 6, 2018, representing LEA Primary School, Azayapi, Bwari Area Council has recently written a book , the Reviewed Mirror of Wisdom, which is about to be published. She said that reading the storybooks donated by AfriGrowth Foundation enhanced her creativity and improved her reading and writing skills, which played a key role in writing her first book.