Sharing the Joy of Reading with an African Child
for 25 years


OCLF promotes the joy of reading in cost-effective ways. To meet this end, it has adopted the following principles:

1. To partner in an efficient and friendly manner with local community leaders at a grassroots level;

2. To provide safe, clean and nurturing environments for learning and to treat all library members with respect;

3. To supply culturally relevant and meaningful books and emphasize that simple stories are good literacy tools;

4. To emphasize and teach careful book care, including washing hands before handling books;

5. To recognize that committed and creative librarians are critical for the promotion of literacy and for maintaining well-functioning libraries;

6. To offer free librarian training, a start-up collection of books and on-going support to community libraries [How to Set Up Community Libraries for Children (English PDF 52 Kb) or Comment établir une Bibliothèque communautaire pour Enfants (en français PDF 52 Kb) and Benefit of Books Workshop (PDF 24 Kb)];

7. To build libraries using local top quality materials and to give attention to function and beauty while being mindful of costs;

8. To offer literacy classes for all ages to those who have not received formal schooling [Literacy Guidelines (PDF 24 Kb) and Suggestions for Literacy Instructors (PDF 227Kb)];

9. To encourage expression through sports, cultural dancing and drumming, theatre and visual arts;

10. To offer high school scholarships for deserving library members who have also reached the required academic standards;

11. To encourage, whenever and wherever possible, the joy of reading.


Literacy! Oh literacy!
How grateful am I to you.
You make me all so great,
to read and write,
to give account of my soul.
Wonderful literacy!
Take root in my life
and make me a useful instrument.

Written by Mary, a literacy student who once attended the Kathy Knowles Community Library