765 schools now have rooms to read
765 schools now have rooms to read. Reading of all good books is like a conversation with the finest minds of the world; but many students are denied...
Reading of all good books is like a conversation with the finest minds of the world; but many students are denied of this conversation. To facilitate book reading among students NGO Room to Read was founded.
The NGO was born out of the anguish of John Wood, when he came across a primary school which hardly had any books, during his trek through the Himalayas in 1998. “Perhaps, sir, you will someday come back with books," said the college headmaster. This inspired Wood to solicit book donations from family and friends via email sent from an Internet cafe in Kathmandu.
A year later, Wood returned to the school with 3,000 books—all donated in response to his email appeal. Taking forward the process, Wood thought that the program should be implemented in all the government schools which lack proper libraries. The book reading movement was launched in 2003 in New Delhi and in Andhra Pradesh in 2008.
‘Room to Read’ AP coordinator K Rajesh Patel shares the NGO’s quest to strengthen primary education and supply books to children by developing libraries in all government schools with The Hans India. “Our focus is on developing world to provide quality educational opportunities by establishing libraries, creating local language children's literature, constructing schools, and providing education to girls.
"We seek to intervene early in the lives of children in the belief that education empowers people to improve socioeconomic conditions for their families, communities, countries, and future generations. Through the opportunities that only education can provide, we strive to break the cycle of poverty, one child at a time," Rajesh adds.
Till date the programme has been implemented in four districts- Mahaboobnagar, Kurnool, Nalgonda and Guntur, covering a total of 765 schools from 34 mandals. Speaking about the change that was noticed in the students, Rajesh says, “Students who are regular to the school and are accessing library books, have experienced a visible change in thenselves.
Their fluency and understanding of stories has been improved besides a considerable improvement in writing skill and way of expressing and sharing their views without fear.” The programme is being conducted in 100 schools in Sattenapalli, Medikondur, Tenali, Peddakakani and Duggirala mandals and in 140 schools in Telangana district of Nalgonda.
By Ravi P Benjamin