African Library Project

African Library Project

The African Library Project coordinates book drives in the United States and partners with African schools and villages to start small libraries.

African Library Project Blog

The African Library Project coordinates book drives in the United States and partners with African schools and villages to start small libraries.

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Summertime has arrived and with it a slew of family vacations, summer jobs, and what can sometimes feel like an endless amount of time to spare. Rest assured that ALP has you covered. We've curated a list of five amazing young adult books that take place right underneath the African sun.

The books range in genre but we guarantee all of them will transport you to fantastical worlds and on mysterious adventures all while giving you a unique look at Africa's long history. So grab something comfortable, cozy up in your favorite reading spot, and crack open one of these five magical summer reads. 

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This is a story about books, Africa, libraries, and my dad. Just a few weeks ago my dad turned 94 years old. While his health has recently started to fail, he continues to find ways of supporting the African Library Project. As a retired educator, I seem to have fallen into an almost full-time volunteer job (for at least the next few years) collecting books, making libraries, fundraising for libraries, and speaking to schools, churches, and other organizations to encourage and support them in establishing libraries for Africa. But having had a hand in many, many libraries in the past 2 ½ years, I could not be doing this all alone!

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Across the world, books have made a resounding impact. Whether it be contemporary stories depicting heart-wrenching accounts of what it means to be human or stories that transport readers to fantastical realms, books are a celebrated artform with deep-rooted cultural significance.  It is often believed that literacy culture and support for books isn’t common in Africa, but countries across the African continent have long histories and current activism in celebrating books and promoting reading culture.

Guest blogger, Don Casperson of Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos, NM shares his experience as a book drive organizer, creating libraries for Kenya with the help of his community's youth:

It is with great joy that I undertook to help with the African Library Project under the enthusiastic direction of Sharon Allen. As a Kiwanis advisor to two of the three Los Alamos elementary school K-Kids clubs, our middle school Builders Club, and our high school Key Club, I am proud of the effort they demonstrated last year as we collected books, boxed them up, and carried out fundraisers to pay for shipping to Africa. All seven of our public schools (five elementary, one middle school, and one high school) participated in the town-wide effort that resulted in libraries for many Kenyan schools.