With an aim to teach rural children, and cultivate a reading habbit among them, a team of Mumbai and Pune-based college students have came up with an initiative - One village, one library.
According to the members of this team called Eklavya, the initiative will help educate rural children.
The concept was conceptualised by the team while participating in the ‘Transform Maharashtra' project oragnised by the state government to provide opportunities for young college students from the state to come up with a programme to provide solutions to the challenges faced by the state currently. The government announced that the initiative - One village, one library - won the Popular Choice award on May 1 at a ceremony in Mumbai. Before conceptualising the initiative, the students carried out a survey in nearby tribal villages of Pune, and Yavatmal district.
Speaking about the survey, Raju Kendre, 24, a student at the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS) Tuljapur campus said, “According to the survey carried out by us we found out that the basic necessity for the children in tribal villages is library where they can spend time to read and learn. A few villages have funds for libraries on paper but nothing is been used. There are hardly any books, and poor infrastructure in the libraries. By building this concept, we want to set up four to five libraries in different villages on our own and make the initiative a working model for every village in the state.” The first few libraries will be set up in Amravati, Pune, andYavatmal districts through crowdfunding. According to Pravin Nikam, a team member, “We will start crowdfunding for the libraries in rural villages soon. We will later take help from corporate funds through CSR activities to extend the initiative. While we will be focusing on storytelling, history, civic studies for children below the age group of 18, career building and UPSC books will be available for children above 18 yearsof age.”