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Household based reading and learning project

To empower parents to facilitate household based reading and learning activities and increase access to reading materials in households

Photo of Olivia Mugabirwe
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I am a.....

  • I'm a teacher and a community development activist

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Household based Reading and Learning project

This project will be implemented by PeerLink Initiative Uganda (PELI-U)  a community rooted organization that works  through a community library and empowerment center model (Nyarushanje Community Library and empowerment center).  PELI-U  will work with the community library team and community based reading facilitators to implement the project.

The project seeks to empower parents/care givers to facilitate household based reading and learning materials in rural Ugandan community.  The project  will reach out to 45 rural based households (7 people per households x 45 = 315 children and care givers/parents) from the  9 nine  parishes (Bwanga, Nyabushenyi, Kisiizi, Ibanda, Bunono, Burora, Ihunga, Ndago and Ruyonza) of Nyarushanje Subcounty, Rubabo County, Rukungiri District in South Western Uganda.

The project focuses on  increasing access to reading  and learning materials at household and community level. This will be done through selection of readers from online resources (Reading A-Z, African story books etc.) print and bind them at the library and distribute them to the households. We will also work with 56 community based primary school teachers from 14 primary schools (4 teachers per school) provide them with basic computer training to enable them type the curriculum content avail it in soft copy and we will make print outs and deliver to the households.  The households will be guided by the library team and community based reading facilitators to come up with household based reading and learning activities that include a weekly household reading sessions (1 reading hour involving the children and the parents/care giver), oral literature sessions that focus on folk tales, riddles, proverbs, music dance an drama, play time, and time for focusing on curriculum content.

 Alongside reading and learning activities household improvement activities will be encouraged at household level that include putting in place tippy taps for hand washing, improved sanitation and latrine facilities, boiling drinking water and emphasis on nutrition.


A culture of literacy and self-guided learning and teaching is promoted in households, schools and communities


Objective 1: Parents/Care givers have the capacity to facilitate household based reading and learning activities.

Objective 2: Primary school teachers have the capacity to integrate Information Communication Technology into the teaching and learning process.

Objective 3:  Increase access to reading and learning materials to households and community members through the community based satellite libraries

Objective 4: Community based reading facilitators have the capacity to spearhead household reading activities and equip parents and caregivers to independently hold reading sessions with their children.

Objective 5: Household members appreciate, love and provide a supportive environment for reading


What part(s) of the pre-COVID school system do you wish to leave in the past? Why?

Before COVID-19 most parents in Uganda especially in rural communities have not been involved actively in the reading and learning of their children. Over years we have registered limited parental imvolvement in the education of their children. There is a poor reading culture and most children do not have access to reading and learning materials at home. There is a general assumption among parents that imparting education and knowledge is the role of teachers solely. I would wish to contribute to enhancing the role of parents in supporting their children's reading and learning activities. I would wish to see more rural homes creating reading spaces at home, sparing time to read with their children or listen to their children read and provide storage space for books and other reading and learning materials.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what inspired you to share this idea.

My name is Olivia Mugabirwe a teacher trainer at Makerere University in Uganda. Alongside teaching i'm a community development activist and have been greatly involved in community development work through PeerLink Initiative Uganda (PELI-U) which i founded in 2006. AVF Video PELI-U pitch 2017

Over years i have observed continued decline in parental involvement in the education of their children and growing up in a rural community and interacting closely with households i know most households do not have a supportive reading and learning enviroment. 

What region are you located in?

  • Eastern Africa

Where are you located?

We are located in Ibanda Parish, Nyarushanje Subcounty, Rubabo County, Rukungiri District, South Western Uganda. Nyarushanje Subcounty is a rural subcounty 380 kilometers from Kampala the capital city of Uganda.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Paul Kim

Olivia. Thank you for taking the time to submit your idea. The structure of family engagement seems to make it quite scaleable and potentially viral. Have you thought about how to choose the reading materials and alternatives to having the reading material printed at libraries? Great idea to incorporate health practices into the reading network.

Photo of Olivia Mugabirwe

Kim. Thank you for taking time to read through my contribution and for the feedback. We will choose the reading materials in close collaboration with the volunteer reading facilitators who are teachers of the community based primary schools. We also plan to consult more teachers engaged in early reading promotion within the community AMD it dude the community. We choose the books according to the age of the children in household and select books appropriate for the age. The online reading materials such as reading A to Z and African story books that we are currently using have different age and levels /grades to select from . For indigenous oral literature content we are working with elders in community and consulting the existing written materials on the indigenous cultural values and literature. Besides printing the books at the library we can loan library books to the households. Most of the households we are targeting do not have access to electricity or solar power they have no access to smart phoned and some do not even have radio's. We could get e-reader's that we could loan to the households in due course. We will continue to reflect further on your feedback as we improve our contribution . Thank you. Olivia