Findcourses.co.uk supports Mary's Library - and helps residents of Homa Bay, Kenya gain access to education
About Mary's Library
Mary's Library was formed on October 15, 2005 and is the result of a project in sustainable development undertaken by student Lina Golden and Homa Bay local Mary Ojijo. Mary is an amazing women, who currently supports 25 children from her extended family network, many of whom have lost parents to the continuing AIDS pandemic, and dedicates her time to providing access to education through the library.
Through a lot of hard work over the last 9 years the library has grown to include over 2000 members and is the only public library in the municipality.
About Homa Bay
Homa Bay is located in western Kenya, on the shores of Lake Victoria, roughly a seven hour car journey from Nairobi, largely down to bad road quality. There are about 55,000 inhabitants and most of the people belong to the group Lou. Homa Bay is an area that has been described as a microcosm for the entire continent of Africa. The region suffers from some of the countries lowest levels of health care and education and is also plagued with dramatic environmental problems. AMREF state “Kenya is home to 650,000 HIV/AIDS orphans, 16,000 of which live in the Homa Bay District.”
FindCourses Global's Support
Mary's Library became a truly meaningful resource for the local people of Homa Bay in 2012 thanks to the support from FindCourses Global (the parent company of Findcourses.co.uk). Each year FindCourses Global expands our support to keep the library running through paying for the premises, the internet connection, maintenance
Findcourses.co.uk is proud to support Mary's Library, as we believe in helping people gain access to education for their development, and Mary's Library is doing just the same. It's our goal to help Mary's Library grow and reach out to more and more people through providing access to education and technology.
How Findcourses.co.uk users help Mary's Library
Users of Findcourses.co.uk help support Mary's Library by providing feedback in a questionnaire we send out about their enquires about courses. For each response we receive, Findcourses.co.uk donates money to Mary's Library which goes to providing a better service for the residents of Homa Bay.
The support from Findcourses.co.uk goes to:
- Paying the rent on the premises
- Maintaining existing computers and investing in new ones
- Supplying the first-ever internet connection in the entire
- Buying books for local students
- Employing a computer tutor
NEWS: New premises, new computers and better internet connection in 2013
The big news in 2013 was the relocation of the library to a new, bigger premise that is very close to the University meaning the library is useful to a lot more people now. Two new computers were purchased in 2013, resulting in a total of five computers now installed in the Library and we hopefully increase the number (to 10) by the end of 2014 - the money donated by Findcourses.co.uk will help maintain these computers.
The internet has been been available in the library since April 2012, and in 2013 we increased the bandwith considerably which will open up a universe of free education material and opportunities for the members of the library. The library now has the only stable internet connection in the entire region.
In addition to this, the continuing support of Findcourses.co.uk will be used to train and employ a computer specialist who will then deliver courses for the members of the library on how to use computers - as these are the best resource available to them.
The long-term goal for Mary's Library is to continue the growth and development to create a sustainable model, in which the library is financially independent and managed entirely by the people of Homa Bay. Mary's Library will help promote the value of education to those with the least access to it.
FindCourses Global shares these goals and believes wholeheartedly with the vision of education as the engine for change in the world.
Find out more
If you would like to find out more or become a supporter of Mary's Library please visit the website of Mary's Library.
Interview with Maxwel Ojijo
Mary's son and the current manager of Mary's Library
Maxwell, the son of Mary, currently the person in charge of the day to day operations of Mary’s Library tells us how it's going for the people of Homa Bay and the Library.
1. How many people use the computers in the library each week?
At least 30 people in a week.
2. How much difference has it made with the Internet?
a. The number of visitors has tremendously increased.
b. It has lead to the development of the community.
c. It has increased the trust of people to the library as installation of internet symbolizes growth in the library.
d. It has changed the face of the library.
3. What type of things do the people of Homa Bay use the Internet for?
a. Communication example using internet for sending e-mails.
b. Accessing social networks example face book chat, twitter and YouTube.
c. Sending jobs application forms.
d. Doing research
e. Online learning
f. Doing business e.g. advertising business online ,getting customers and suppliers etc.
g. Entertainments e.g. games, music and videos
h. Computer training examples learning how to use internet
4. What is the biggest benefit of having the Internet?
a. Attracts more people to the library as they can access the internet to supplement the books as they learn.
b. It helps in making the library known more as it has different users.
c. It helps in bringing different categories of people as the internet is access by different groups of people from young to the old.
d. It enhance social interaction example through face book.
e. It helps in getting and spreading the information.
f. It enhances business as business people can advertise, get customers and suppliers/creditors.
g. A form of entertainment.
h. It promotes learning through online learning.
5. What are your dreams for the library in the future?
a. To be a centre of excellent with a view attracting community on reading culture and exchanging ideas.
b. To have a proper premises for the library.
c. To be well equipped to accommodate different categories of users from all possible fields example schools,colleges,researchers etc.
d. To make a change in the community by initiating and promoting reading culture.
e. To provide the best materials and services concerning the library and cyber café to the people.
f. To be the best library in the whole region.