Each year at the National NAFSA Conference, GoAbroad holds Innovation Awards to highlight the incredible work being done in the international education world. As much as we applaud all of the incredible winners, we are so proud and excited to share that our partner, Pangea Educational Development, won the Innovation in Philanthropy award for their project Pangea Publishing! WOO! What a well deserved award! We are excited to share more about the incredible work they are doing through the Pangea Publishing Project.
What is Pangea Publishing?
In partnership with the Ugandan Ministry of Education and the Ugandan National Library Service, Pangea Publishing is working to create and distribute locally relevant literature to communities in Uganda. The goal of this project is to promote literacy at home by increasing accessibility of books and empowering communities through Ugandan stories.
Books are wonderful tools for imagination, education, and connection. Pangea recognizes that Uganda does not have many written books in their local languages and about their lives, how they were and how they are. This leaves the communities with access to culturally irrelevant literature which is not something that they can connect with, especially when the books are not written in familiar languages.
Although there are not many written books (yet!), Uganda has a strong tradition of oral storytelling which has been passed down through generations. In order to preserve these stories and share them tangibly, Pangea hopes to work with the community members to record and develop these stories into illustrated books that will be accessible forever! The books will be produced in local languages – vernacular and national – and will be preserved in national archives so that the stories will be remembered, and the ever-changing culture and languages will not be forgotten.
Pangea recognizes that accessing books is difficult for community members, so instead of community members going to the books, Pangea is bringing the books to the community members! Families will be able to subscribe to a Mobile Library service which will bring books directly to their doors each month. The families will be able to borrow enough books for their whole family, and then will exchange them each month for new stories.
This will allow families to read culturally relevant books in familiar languages each month. This will increase a reading culture within the community and encourage children to continue reading, even when they are not in school. It also empowers the communities because families will be able to access books and stories that are familiar and relevant. Representation of identity and experience is so important and we applaud Pangea Publishing for recognizing and enforcing this within their efforts! Check out all of the incredible work Pangea is doing and sign up to get notified about the Pangea Publishing project!
Pangea Publishing will only continue to expand on the efforts of the Library Project that we helped support last year!