Ange Kagame, the daughter of President Paul Kagame, joined an event hosted by Bloomberg Philanthropies in New York to promote the LibraryforAll application, an initiative aimed at using technology to promote the culture of reading.
Representing Imbuto Foundation, which has partnered with Bloomberg to implement the Library For All in Rwanda, Ange Kagame spoke on the unique opportunity the application presents.
“The technology perfectly aligns with our country-wide efforts to increase digital learning, develop Rwanda’s reading and writing culture, and maximize the use of information and communications technology. Together with Imbuto and Bloomberg Philanthropies, Library for All can make a big difference in the lives of many children and young adults by encouraging the culture of reading in Rwanda.”
Sharing some of her personal experience, Ange Kagame recounted the role reading played in her own education, starting at home.
“Growing up, my parents made reading a top priority. My parent’s emphasis on reading is not confined to our home, they have made it a priority for our entire country. Education is the key to our country’s future.”
Referring to Rwanda’s focus on increasing access to technology for every child, Ange Kagame described the addition of the Library for All programme as an opportunity to increase the use of technology for education.
“The successful programme of one laptop per child is already a policy in all primary schools and is expanding to one digital ID per child. This will allow a child to log in anywhere at any time, making it easier to track his or her progress.”
Library For All will complement Rwanda’s digital education policy by providing e-learning materials provided directly to schools on various devices including cell phones, desktops, and tablets.
Ange Kagame concluded by emphasising the benefit of accessibility for every child:
“This kind of accessibility will go a long ways to enhance the reading culture and boost the enthusiasm for learning starting at a young age. I am sure, we all agree that in the end In the end, knowledge is power.”
Imbuto Foundation, an organisation founded by the First Lady, Jeannette Kagame; the Ministry of Education; and the Bloomberg Philanthropies, chaired by former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg, have joined hands to increase the culture of reading as well as improve the availability of educational materials in Rwanda.
Library For All will offer digital educational platforms to NGOs and other institutions interested in expanding the resources available to students.
With its focus on education, the project joins an integral part of Imbuto Foundation work including the Reading Day Campaign, launched in 2010, which raises awareness among teachers and parents on the importance of reading. The project has also secured partnerships with main telecommunications companies and providers.