Stories from our Libraries in Uganda


Esther likes to read Tanga-Poems which she read after her chores.

Esther is 14 years and in primary seven in Namalogo primary school on the outskirts of Mbale town. She hails from a family of seven children and she is the first born. Her father is a taxi driver while her mother is a teacher.

Her favourite book is titled,” Tanga-Poems and stories” which she reads from home during the weekend when she finishes her domestic chores.

Esther wants to study to become a doctor in order to treat people in her community.

She says the library has helped her because it has a lot of books on science, which she enjoys reading a lot. She says she has no books at home apart from the bible. Her mother helps her with reading when she finds a word she does not understand.



Aaron’s teacher read them “The Three Little Pigs” in class and now it’s his favourite books.

Aaron, 13 years old is a p.4 pupil in Bumbobi primary school. He comes from a family of seven children, where he is the 4th born child. His father is a carpenter while his mother is a farmer.

His favourite book is titled, “The Three Little Pigs” which is about the wolf which wanted to eat the pigs. He has read this book with friends in class but also at home with his elder brother. He says the teacher encouraged him to read the book and he also found it interesting.

He wants to be a lawyer when he grows up because lawyers are well respected and can support their families. He likes the library because it has very interesting books.

The few things he doesn’t like about the library is the traffic noise from the road which distracts his concentration in reading. The library also doesn’t have enough chairs.



Florence’s favourite book is called “Fruits” where she enjoys learning about plants.
Florence is an 11-year-old pupil of Bumbobi primary school in primary five. She is the 3rd born of a family of three kids. Her father is a mason while her mother is nursery school teacher.

Her favourite book is titled “Fruits” and she has read it twice. She goes to the library at least once a week to borrow a book for home reading since she has no television at home. She selected her favourite book because it had very nice pictures, but also got a lot of information inside the book about plants.

She says the library has helped her to know about things like snow and dinosaurs which are not in Uganda.

Her desire is for more books can be added to the library, that means more information. She wants to become a police woman when she grows up because she wants to reduce cases of defilement and child marriage in schools.



Reagan’s favourit book is called Magic, about a young boy who has magic to change things around him.

Reagan is a 12-year-old p.5 pupil at Elgon Primary school located in Mbale municipality. He is a third born in a family of 6 children. His father works as a local council representative while the mother is a farmer.

His favourite book is Magic, which is about a young boy who has magic to change things around him. Reagan visits the library twice a week and likes reading books about rockets and aeroplanes. He knows where to find these books in the library because the librarian took them through orientation on how to find a book in the library. If he finds a word he does not understand, his elder brother helps him if he is at home but if he is at school, he uses the dictionary to find the meaning of new words.

They have some reading materials at home like newspapers, bible and books but he finds them difficult to read, unlike the library books. He also likes the library because it is clean and conducive for reading and has many different types of books for reading. The only problem is that it doesn’t have enough chairs for many pupils to read at the same time. When he finishes his studies, He wants to be an Engineer.


Godfrey and Yowana

Reading buddies Godfrey and Yowana say it’s more fun to read with a friend.

Godfrey and Yowana are in the reading buddies programme together. Godfrey is 13 years old, in his 6th year of primary school. He is from a family of four, though both his parents have passed away. Yowana is 11 and in his 4th year of primary school. He comes from a family with 8 children and his father sells charcoal and the mother is a farmer. Godfrey and Yowana started reading together after the inception of the paired reading program in their primary school in February 2017.

They have read together a book titled, ‘Good night, sleep well and God bless you’. They always come to the library on Monday and Thursday at 6:00 am in the morning and read up to 7:00 am. This is made possible by the librarian who leaves the key with Peace, who is the pupil librarian and resides near the school. During their paired reading sessions, they are assisted by Mr Kundu, a teacher who resides in the school too.

They say the paired reading project has helped them to learn from one another a lot of words and their pronunciation and it has created for them the interest in reading. They have also learnt to go to the teachers for assistance on anything which they find difficult which used not to be the case. Before this, they used to fear teachers but now they are friends. They are also encouraged by their partners to read, even when they might feel like skipping.

They enjoyed reading together so much they have encouraged their friend Nalobi to also find a reading partner. Now both Godfrey and Yowana both want to become teachers when they grow up to help more children with reading.



Rebecca’s older sister helps her with her reading when the words are too difficult.

Rebecca is 10 years old and pupil of Mpogo primary school in her 5th year of primary school. She is the 5th child in a family of 7 children. Her father works in South Sudan while her mother is a farmer. She lives three kilometres from the school.

Rebecca’s favourite book is “Naughty Mouse” which she picked herself from the library shelves. Her sister who is in senior three at Highway High school helps her with her reading. She says because of library books; she is now best friends with her sister who always helps her to read hard words.

They do not have any other reading materials at home, so she sometimes picks a book on her sister’s request but makes sure she returns it to keep the friendship she has with the pupil librarian. The books have also helped her to improve her reading and comprehension.

She helps in organizing the books and cleaning the library to have access to books all the time. She says she wants to become a nurse when she completes her studies to help treat people in her community



Heldens’s favourite book is the weather books which describes the world’s weather patterns.

Helden is the 14-year-old first-born in a family of four currently attending primary seven in Mpogo primary school located in Sironko district. His father is a teacher in the same school while his mother is a farmer.

He has read many books but his favourite is the weather book, which describes all the weather patterns in different parts of the world. He says it has nice pictures depicting different weather in different countries, which he finds interesting. He likes the library because it has lots of books on science.

His passion is when he grows up, he wants to be an accountant because they have a good income. He wants to be able to build a nice home for his family. The thing he dislikes about the library is that it doesn’t have books on mathematics. Yet he also doesn’t have books at home, though his father helps him a lot with reading and homework.



Peace’s favourite book is called the lost key, because she once lost the library key herself.

Peace Nasambu is a 16-year-old p.6 pupil of Buyaka primary school. Her father works in Kampala as a casual labourer while the mother is a farmer. She is the 2nd born in the family of 8 children.

She is a pupil librarian and her favourite book is the lost key. This reminds her of the dilemma she went through when she lost the library key. She goes to the library from Monday to Friday because apart from reading books, she helps tidy the books and also lend books to her fellow pupils. She likes the library a lot because it has many interesting books. It also has made her popular and gain respect from her peers. She has made a lot of friends because of the library.

According to her, if the school can put shutters in the windows to the library, and also put electricity, then it would be the perfect library. She doesn’t like her library in its current state because there is a lot of dust which gives her extra cleaning work.

She does not have any other reading materials at home. All she has access to are the library book. Her ambition is to become a teacher when she grows up so that she can help pupils to learn how to read.



Brian spends ever lunchtime in the library

Brian is a 12-year-old pupil in class 4 of a primary school. He is the third child in a family of four. His English is good which can perhaps be attributed to the time he spends reading! At home, he has some textbooks for the Ugandan syllabus and hopes to follow his brother to secondary school. He told us that he really enjoys science books and that science is his favourite subject in school.

Brian is fortunate to be in a school where the English results are improving. Previously half the children failed their English leaving test, but last year there was a 95% pass rate!

Brian’s English teacher attributes this to the good quality books available to her pupils.

Support us by ensuring good quality literary books reach more children like Brian.