To provide background on how the Kitengesa Community Library in rural Uganda, which serves as both a community library and a school library, might be seen as a model for other similar libraries in developing countries. To use a case study of the library to highlight certain characteristics of rural libraries as developed by B.J. Mostert and presented in his 1998 article.
The information in the article comes from a two‐year study of the Kitengesa Community Library. The methodology included focus groups, interviews, door‐to‐door visits, questionnaires, examination of library circulation information, and many hours of observation. Information from the study was then used to support the comparison to Mostert's characteristics of the rural community library. A review of the professional literature is also provided.
Findings indicate that the Kitengesa Community Library is a successful working model that might be used in other similar rural villages to serve both schools and the community. Implications of the findings are discussed in detail.
Future research might include the impact of the library on the achievement of students, and the impact of the library on the teaching and learning practices of users.
The information presented in this paper offers some basic considerations in terms of the implementation of rural library services. Provision of such services is becoming increasingly important as more and more of the world's population becomes literate, and more of the world's attention is focused on the welfare of those living on the African continent.
The study itself is unique in that the data hail from a two‐year study of a small village library. Literacy is a major factor in terms of development in underdeveloped nations, and libraries have the potential to play an important role in the eradication of illiteracy, and provision of services for the “newly literate”.
Dent, V. (2006), "Modelling the rural community library: Characteristics of the Kitengesa Library in rural Uganda", New Library World, Vol. 107 No. 1/2, pp. 16-30. https://doi.org/10.1108/03074800610639003Download as .RIS
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