This is a key exciting focus of our program. Unlike many other libraries in Mexico, LPP provides free access to books. This allows children more time to enjoy their books on their own time at home. In addition, children can share their books with their family members. In this way the whole family benefits from the same book. Children recognize that they need to return the books so that other community members can also benefit. This overall approach means that economic level does not get in the way of the joy and benefits of reading.
About the books: Libros para Pueblos provides a book collection at the time of a library’s inauguration; every year, pending sponsorship, more new books are provided at the Annual Conference. Most of our books are at the elementary school level, however, we are expanding the selection of preschool books and chapter books for older children. An important criterion is: Will the book interest young people in Oaxacan communities? The vast majority of the books are in Spanish to support the young people’s development of reading in school. Where possible, we purchase books in the indigenous languages of Oaxaca or bilingual books.
The types of libraries: Libros para Pueblos libraries are found in a variety of venues. Some are in elementary schools, serving children in grades 1‐6. Each grade has at least one hour per week scheduled for a library visit. We have established children’s corners in existing municipal libraries in larger communities, as well as art workshops, and even a prison. Finally, there are village libraries whose every existence LPP has fostered, which also offer the community a central place to gather and enjoy a variety of reading related activities. .
Story time:Libraries are encouraged to have a regular story time to motivate and engage young people.
About the expectations of the libraries:To become a Libros Para Pueblos library, communities must submit an application confirming they will:
● Provide and maintain a suitable space for the library.
● Find a person to serve as librarian.
● Post regular hours of operation.
● Ensure free access to community members.
● Maintain a system for lending books.
● Provide shelving that displays children’s books with covers facing out.
● Schedule story telling activity.
● Work with community and schools to promote use of the library.
● Pay the transportation cost for their librarian(s) to attend the annual conference.
● Pay a one‐time upfront fee of 2,000 Mexican pesos to show the commitment of the community.