Giving Tuesday falls on November 30, 2021 - mark your calendars!
Every year, thousands of youth in Tanzania enter the workforce with little to no literacy - numeric, digital, or conventional. As the world continues to change, all types of literacy are necessary to ensure that people have access to jobs, healthcare, and their communities. Those without literacy skills risk low wages, under- or unemployment, and the inability to care for themselves and their families.
While primary education is both free and compulsory in Tanzania, it is clear that thousands are missing out on literacy skills, whether wholly or in part. As of 2019, approximately 1.4 million children were out of school in Tanzania, meaning that they had no access to numerical or conventional literacy education.
To ensure that children enrolled at Saving Grace complete their education with the literacy skills they need, we want to turn our library into a modern media center.
Of course, reading, writing, and arithmetic are part of the curriculum at Saving Grace, but libraries are of critical importance in teaching literacy, even beyond the obvious presence of books. Libraries provide another space for children to learn - it encourages them to read on their own and by extension inspires personal exploration. With the addition of computers, tablets, cell phones, and television, children can be introduced to digital information. In Tanzania, where over a quarter of the population live below the poverty line, many children do not have access to these items at home. Finally, providing students with alternative resources for learning allows teachers to focus on other important tasks like grading and lesson planning; students can continue learning on their own with minimal supervision.