In Cambodia, a library boat on the Tonlé Sap lake

In September 2023, Action Education and its partners inaugurated a mobile library. It welcomes children and adults from communities on the flood plains of the Tonlé Sap lake, in the province of Battambang in Cambodia.

The library is designed to promote literacy and strengthen the reading culture among children and adults. It houses hundreds of titles, as well as an internet connection, connected televisions, fans and a water filter. The library will be open to pupils from Monday to Saturday to encourage them to read and allow them to borrow books to read at home.

Despite having over 300 pupils, the limited resources of Kaoh Chiveang primary school meant that it previously had only a few books. These were rotated between classes to enable the pupils to read.

Reading in the library

Reading in the library

A library to get into the habit of reading

The headmaster of Kaoh Chiveang Primary School, Nuon Vuthy, said:

I am extremely pleased that Action Education has set up a library in the school. The library will enable children to get into the habit of reading from the start of primary school and, after reading in class, they can continue to read in the library. The library offers unique books that stimulate children's curiosity and encourage them to read more. As our school is flooded during the rainy season, we don't have a playground as such, and it can be dangerous for pupils to play outside. With this library, they get into the habit of reading ."

Nuon Vuthy, Headmaster of Kaoh Chiveang Primary School

Nuon Vuthy, Headmaster of Kaoh Chiveang Primary School

 

Navy Chantou, an 8-year-old third-grader at Kaoh Chiveang Primary School, is all smiles as she happily declares:

I'm glad that the school has a library, because there are lots of books to read and learn from. I like books with pictures. Every day I spend at least half an hour reading books in the library. ."

Navy Chantou, pupil at Kaoh Chiveang primary school

Navy Chantou, pupil at Kaoh Chiveang primary school

More than 10 school libraries around the Tonlé Sap

Samphors Vorn, National Director of Action Education in Cambodia, said:

We hope that the library will help to promote study and health awareness activities. The connected TVs will be used to support storytelling activities and knowledge related to applied science, technology, engineering and maths. The digital library will also serve as a resource that teachers can use to research pedagogy and career guidance. ."

Samphors Vorn, National Director of Action Education, addresses the local authorities, the headmaster, teachers and parents of the Kaoh Chiveang primary school.

Samphors Vorn, National Director of Action Education, addresses the local authorities, the headmaster, teachers and parents of the Kaoh Chiveang primary school.

 

This initiative is part of the CCOSC (Cambodian Consortium for Out-of-School Children,) run by Action Education in partnership with Educate a Childa worldwide programme run by the Education Above All. The school library project currently supports more than 10 libraries around the Tonle Sap lake region, including nine mobile libraries (tuk-tuk) and a boat library.

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