Books remain the cornerstone of our work, but we recognize that technology can open other avenues for learning. Young people in Oaxaca need access to this technology in order to participate effectively in the larger society. Plus, they love it; their enthusiasm when gathered around a computer is remarkable. One generous Mexican donor has donated two computers to five Libros para Pueblos libraries; other donors contributed computers to three more. Some school and municipal libraries also have government‐provided computers. As a result, 56% of the libraries that Libros para Pueblos supports have at least one computer. In a number of cases these computers are reaching the end of their useful lives. 40% percent of LPP supported libraries are connected to the Internet.
With the growth in technology, there are more possibilities for computer access. In 2015 a pilot study was implemented with five tablets in the community of Santa Inés de Zaragoza under the direction of librarians Cristiam Santos and Guadalupe Santiago Hernandez, funded by Executive Committee member Don Northey. Children gained Internet access by sitting outside the grounds of the local health clinic. The children eagerly engaged in searching Google, using social media, playing games, exploring websites and reading stories. In the school the tablets were successfully used for enrichment activities while teachers also gave special classes after school to the grade five and six students on various computer skills. Based on the success of this pilot study, a proposal for funding was submitted and accepted by a benefactor. As a result in 2016 five tablets were introduced to each of nine Libros para Pueblos sponsored libraries, 53 more will be added in 2017. Each Regional Coordinator has access to a tablet and is the key to overseeing and expanding the project. We look forward to the implementation and positive impact of this new project.
Some ways that you may want to be involved in bringing technology to libraries are to sponsor the funding of Internet services for a library or funding the purchase of tablets for libraries. Join us in expanding reading opportunities for children in Oaxaca!
"56% of Libros para Pueblos libraries have at least one computer"