Sierra Leone News: Call to end book famine in Salone

Memunatu and Osman, 13, are pupils at the Bassa Town Primary School in Western Rural, Waterloo. They are just two of the many thousands of children whose educations were disrupted by Ebola. When Waterloo was badly affected by the ebola epidemic, like other pupils they spent a year stuck at home, unable to go outside and play and in constant fear of the disease.
Since the reopening of schools after the ebola-free declaration, the children are in dire need of books. Bassa Town Primary like most primary schools of that stature have only a small number of curriculum textbooks and no other books at all.
Yearie Darboh Kamara, Head Teacher at Bassa Town Primary School, said, “we need more books! At the moment only 12 or 15 children can come at one time to read and I would like the whole school to be able to sit down and read together.”
“In Sierra Leone there is a book famine for many of our children. They depend almost entirely on what the teacher says or writes on the blackboard for their learning. So there is a real need for books,” said Sallieu Turay, Chief Librarian of the Sierra Leone Library Board.
However, projects like Build on Books which began in 2009, to send books to schools and libraries in Sierra Leone, have provided books for over 170 libraries so far. However, Build on Books has also been helping schools and communities to help themselves overcome the devastating effects of poverty.
“Build on Books provides the resources while Sierra Leonean communities provide hard work and dedication. The books and science equipment we send provide the tools for future prosperity while goats and seed help feed children now,” the founder Lori Spragg explained.
Notwithstanding the Build on Books project, other nonprofits like Book Aid International has also chipped in through it online fundraiser to happy bring more books to pupils in the deprived community in Sierra Leone who are in dire need of it.
By Ophaniel Gooding
Awoko  Tuesday, October 10, 2017.

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