A house in Bisha Amer in Zagazig City, Egypt, has been transformed into a library for children who are passionate about reading, as there is someone reading a book in every corner of the library. The goal is to provide cultural services to children in some villages and rural areas.
An initiative to encourage children to read and read was initiated by Muhammad Abdel Aziz Fathi, a resident of the village who said: “The idea came because some villages or rural areas were deprived of cultural services. Since I work in the field of libraries (Egypt's Public Library in Zagazig), I thought of helping the people in these areas. Developing culture and creativity is one of the functions of libraries in society, and I must assist the people in my village in fulfilling this role."
He added, “I contacted the administration of Misr Public Library in Zagazig, and talked about the possibility of borrowing 2,000 books per month, and providing a place for children to come and borrow books for free, read and summarize them.” He agreed with two public libraries to borrow about two thousand books to teach the children of his village, and he has since been joined by children from two neighboring villages.
Fathi, 34, has converted part of his home into a library, where children come to read or borrow up to five books a week. His small library is visited regularly by 500 children between the ages of three and 20.
Younger children practice reading, writing, painting and playing chess, while older visitors receive training in marketing, computer science and programming.
The library also offers literacy programs for the elderly who cannot read or write.
And Fathi added, “The subject goes beyond reading, as there are different activities in several fields, as many groups of children come from different ages, from the first three years to the university level, and specific activities are allocated to each category.”
He pointed out, “The idea attracted volunteers from the villagers to help teach children and summarize books for them.”
Fathi hopes to get more support in order to provide more space for the children and implement his idea in other villages. “I am currently working in my house, and I provide a small place with books so that each child comes with a copy of his guardian’s card to borrow 5 books and retrieve them after a week.” he added