|Home||Who we are||What we do||Where we work||News, events & media||Contact us|
Busolwe Public Library in Butaleja District in Eastern Uganda is to combine modern information technology (ICT) with traditional communication methods like drama to provide health information in the local Lunyole language.
The library's Humanye Obulamu Project (HOP) is one of five new public library community development services to receive an EIFL Public Library Programme (EIFL-PLIP) grant. It will use the Internet, video, CDs, books, lectures and drama to spread health messages in Lunyole and English.
Working with the Lunyole Language Association, librarians will translate information focused on local health needs into Lunyole. Doctors and healthcare workers will review the new material to make sure that the translations are accurate.
The library will also provide free access to the Internet on five new computers, and whenever possible, ensure that a healthcare worker is on hand in the library to help service users find relevant information.
The library will also create a drama group. The group will include health workers, who will travel to different parts of Busolwe and perform short plays to mobilize communities to take steps to prevent disease and to raise health standards.
'The idea is that people will meet with their healthcare workers, and the healthcare workers can refer their patients to the library to find further information about their illness, or about disease prevention,' said Mr Ivan Kaibo, a librarian at Busolwe Public Library.
'A key part of the project will be the training of library staff. Librarians and library volunteers will be trained by nurses, doctors, and other medical personnel so that they have a good basic knowledge about common local health issues. They will also be trained to find reliable health information over the Internet and build health resources at the library,' he added.
The library will also host health lectures to promote discussion about health issues, and work with local schools to create health clubs among pupils. The pupils will spread health messages in the community, among their peers and at home.
Background to Humanye Obulamu Project (HOP)
Busolwe Public Library in Butaleja District in Eastern Uganda organizes regular literacy classes for women. At every class, learners raise concerns about health, including how to improve access to health care and where to find reliable health information. The women especially expressed a need for health information in the local language, Lunyole. Based on these discussions, the library engaged with local health service providers and developed the Humanye Obulamu Project (HOP).
The new service
Busolwe Public Library will install five new computers in the library and work with local health service providers and experts to build a database of health resources focused on health issues that are common in Butaleja District. Librarians will translate important information into Lunyole, and the service will provide information in both English and Lunyole. Whenever possible, the library will try to ensure a health worker is present in the library to help service users find relevant information.
The library will also create a drama group comprising health workers, librarians and volunteers, who will develop short plays, and travel to different parts of Busolwe. To ensure that the health messages reach a large audience, the library will package health messages for broadcast on local radio and take part in live radio talk shows. Information will also be distributed through CD, video and in print.
Librarians will work with schools and form health clubs. The pupils will share health messages with their peers and at home. In addition, the library will organize lectures and events to promote discussion of health issues in the community.
Busolwe Public Library will partner with the Lunyole Language Association who will ensure that translation of health information into Lunyole is accurate. The Healthcare Workers’ Association will mobilize health workers, train health workers and library staff, review translated materials to confirm that health content is correct, and ensure that health workers are available at the library to help service users find relevant information. The association will also identify speakers for events at the library and coordinate the library’s relationship with Busolwe Hospital. The district Office of Education will mobilize schools to form health clubs. Local council leaders, religious leaders, cultural leaders and elders will help popularize the service in the Busolwe community.
Busolwe Public Library is replicating Kenya National Library Service’s e-health corners. The service provides free Internet access and an Internet-based health information database to health workers and the general public; builds capacity to use the Internet and the database and hosts events focused on health.