Access to education & culture

In France, the United States, and across the world, large segments of the population, including rural communities, are marginalized and lack access to cultural resources and quality educational programs. Through our efforts to create library spaces and free public educational resources, LWB fights against inequality, discrimination, and the dangers of misinformation.

Our Principles

When building new programs, we always work closely with local groups, including tenants’ associations, libraries, and schools to customize the language and the content of our programs,  and to achieve measurable impact. We create innovative tools and implementation methodologies that fill local communal and family needs. nnWe also work to reimagine libraries, both in terms of their physical design and their potential impact, within and beyond their walls.

Our collaboration with libraries in France, Australia, and the United States  demonstrates the tremendous effect and potential of tools like the Ideas Box to transform communities, and to reinvent the library itself. Since the need to reimagine the library as a lever of development extends beyond the borders of industrialized countries, we are actively expanding our library programs within the Global South.

OUR STRATEGIC OBJECTIVES

We seek to reduce inequalities of access to information, education, and culture globally.

We seek to reinvent the library as a key space and that can reduce inequality and strengthen community, democracy, and citizenship.

Some of Our Current Programs

  • The Ideas Box in France

After a year of successful experiments in 2015, our projects have developed rapidly in France. With LWB’s oversight and expertise, many communities have acquired the Ideas Box: Calais, Paris, Sarcelles, Marseille, and the Department of Ille-et-Vilaine. LWB also works directly with local neighborhood associations such as Acelem in Marseille. By the end of 2016, we will have 15 Ideas Box projects running in France.

  • Code Travelers, A Digital Literacy and Coding Program

Digital literacy and computer programming are key tools that empower children to be not just consumers of media, but also informed digital citizens. Through Code Travelers, Libraries Without Borders has put civic engagement and volunteering at the heart of our strategy to provide a broad swath of French youth with introductory computer programming courses. Across France, LWB’s digital literacy clubs are flourishing, offering highly-motivated young people the keys to understand today’s highly digital world, and to pursue careers in coding. Since 2015, LWB has overseen a network of 80 clubs initiated by libraries, neighborhood associations, schools, and businesses.

  • The Khan Academy in French

Since 2013, LWB has partnered with Khan Academy to translate over 5,000 video lessons and adapt them to the French curriculum, creating a personalized learning platform with over 1.5 million French users.

LWB provides high quality educational resources in mathematics, biology, physics, chemistry and medicine that have been adapted to all grade-levels. Through our interactive web platform (available since September 2014), we provide students access to thousands of study materials, and offer teachers and parents an advanced tutorial method that allows them to monitor a child’s progress.

  • The Ideas Box in the United States

Following a successful summer program in the South Bronx, New York in 2015, our US projects have grown steadily. The Detroit Mayor’s Office invited LWB to run an Ideas Box project of afterschool, weekend, and school holiday programming. In early 2017, we will launch a new mobile library program with the Oakland Public Library. LWB focuses its US programs on impoverished communities with low literacy rates and poor access to the internet, libraries, and other cultural resources.

  • Portable Libraries : From Haiti to Cameroon

LWB has continued to develop its expertise in mobile libraries, most notably through the “Bibliotaptap” program in Haiti, where mobile libraries are set up on Haitian taxis (the “taptaps”) that circulate throughout the country, even on difficult roads. In Cameroon, LWB has worked with two partners—CLAC, a cultural organization and LWB partner of over seven years, and the Ministry of Culture—in building two multi-media buses in Yaounde and its neighboring areas.

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