EDITORIAL: Address poor reading culture through innovation and creativity

As the country continues to explore different ways to address the poor reading culture, stakeholders should come up with more innovative and creative initiatives to make reading attractive. One of the biggest challenges in tackling this problem is that many people view reading as an academic matter and will only visit the library when doing research or if they have an exam. Few people appreciate that reading for leisure is one of the best ways to improve one’s literacy levels while at the same time improving their intellectual prowess.

As the country continues to explore different ways to address the poor reading culture, stakeholders should come up with more innovative and creative initiatives to make reading attractive. One of the biggest challenges in tackling this problem is that many people view reading as an academic matter and will only visit the library when doing research or if they have an exam. Few people appreciate that reading for leisure is one of the best ways to improve one’s literacy levels while at the same time improving their intellectual prowess.

Despite the many campaigns which have been conducted to promote literacy in the country, the reading culture is still poor. So what could probably turn around this state of affairs? The answer lies in creativity to make reading attractive for all age groups, including the young and old, graduates and those still in school.

Indeed, the latest innovation by Kigali Public Library is an example of an innovation that we should build on to come up with more attractive ways to promote the reading culture.  For Kigali Public Library, the government signed a five-year partnership with Innovation Village, a local design and innovation company that has gone on to set up an innovation hub at the rooftop of the library.

This kind of approach goes beyond the traditional library which many people view as boring and outdated. In today’s era we need to go beyond the traditional library setting in order to make reading attractive and trendy.

Innovation Village has introduced an art café and a culture hub and is on course to expand this to other public libraries. Such creativity will see more people embrace reading as a hobby.

With more efforts like these, we shall make reading part of our culture.

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