April 3, 2009

100 Libraries Donated to Rural Elementary Schools in China!

Books of all kinds play a critical role in a child’s development. Unfortunately, there are very few books beyond school textbooks found in most rural elementary schools that the students can read. It’s a terrible thing for a child to grow up without having access to the educational tools and resources that many of us take for granted. The Library Project, an American charity based out of Xi’an, China, is rectifying this problem one book at a time.


On March 20, 2009 The Library Project donated their 100th library to the Lao Zhuang Elementary School located in Lantian County, China. There are 11 students that attend grades 1-2 at this small elementary school. Most of the student’s parents work locally as farmers. The Library Project provided 300 Chinese language children’s books for grades 1-2, a colorful bookshelf, a globe and a plant.

The Library Project also provided colorful paint, brushes and rollers to be used to brighten up the school and only classroom at Lao Zhuang Elementary School. The local community and the student’s parents picked up the brushes and transformed the Lao Zhuang Elementary School into a bright and fun place for the children to learn and grow.


In addition to books, furniture and paint, every elementary school Librarian received training on how to manage their new library. Since most rural elementary schools have never had a single book in their library for children to read, The Library Project’s Librarian Training Program gets them up to speed on day one. Volunteers also play a huge part in the process of providing libraries. “Our volunteers play an important role in introducing the students to their new library. Games are played, songs are sung, and of course books are read. It is a very positive experience for everyone involved; the school administration, teachers, students, and the volunteers,” says Jenny Wang, The Library Project’s Country Director.


As of March 2009, The Library Project has established 100 elementary school libraries throughout China. They’ve put more than 71,000 Chinese language children’s books into the hands of eager young readers. Over 22,000 children now have access to improved educational infrastructure.

Each school received a wide range of high quality children’s books that included history, science, short stories, fairy tales, reference books and comics. They also provided a full set of children’s encyclopedias for older students and pinyin language books for the kids beginning to learn to read. The Library Project also provided colorful child-safe tables and chairs, posters and a world globe to all the classrooms and libraries.

Due to the positive response of the local communities in China, The Library Project has been experiencing tremendous growth. They have just completed their 100th library donation in China, with another 125 scheduled for completion by the end of 2009.

“These remote elementary schools have fantastic administration, dedicated teachers, and a great bunch of students eager to learn. Most rural elementary schools lack quality children’s books to spark their young mind’s creativity and a love of reading. We have the means to get them books, but all we need now is the funding. We need help,” says Tom Stader, The Library Project Founder.

Education is change, and The Library Project is creating change in the simplest way possible, by giving children the resources to learn and grow. To succeed, they need support. If you are interested in donating or finding out about other ways of becoming involved, please visit their website at www.library-project.org or contact Tom Stader at tom@library-project.org. There is a wealth of information about each of the libraries that they have donated in China to date as well as prospects for future libraries.