Congratulations to seven scholarship winners
EIFL and Next Library® announce the names of seven Next Library Festival 2017 scholarship winners

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EIFL and Next Library® are delighted to announce the names of seven winners of a scholarship to attend the 2017 Next Library International Festival in Aarhus, Denmark.

The 2017 Next Library Festival takes place from 11 – 14 June 2017 in Dokk1 – Aarhus’s award-winning public library building. It brings together forward-thinking library professionals, innovators and decision-makers from around the world – people who are pushing boundaries and making changes to support learning in the 21st century.

Each of the seven winners will participate in the Festival by helping to shape the programme, sharing experiences and ideas, and informing their colleagues and communities about the Festival through social media, presentations and other channels.

Meet the winners

Congratulations to -

  • Charles Kamdem Poeghela, director of the Centre for Reading and Cultural Activities (CLAC) in Yaounde, Cameroon’s capital city. Charles brings to the Festival information about his library’s computer-based maths education programme, which has helped 300 schoolchildren improve their maths test results by an average of 13.8%. He will also speak about the library’s mobile library service - the first in Cameroon.
  • Bright Ofori, assistant librarian at Volta Regional Library in Ho, administrative capital of Ghana’s Volta Region. Bright will share learning from the library’s mobile hands-on computer classes project, which takes laptop computers and modem internet to poorly-resourced schools to give struggling children essential practical experience of digital technology. The project has improved technology skills of hundreds of children since it was launched in 2012.
  • Purity Kavuri-Mutuku, Senior Librarian at Nakuru Public Library in Nakuru, capital of Nakuru County in Kenya. Purity will share experiences from the library’s maths improvement programme for schoolchildren. The programme uses computers and maths education software to change children’s negative attitudes to maths by making the subject attractive and fun. Purity reports that in addition to improving the children’s maths, the programme has enhanced their reading, language and computer skills.
  • Bonile Nyoka, manager of eLearning Programmes in public libraries in Johannesburg, South Africa. Bonile will speak about Johannesburg City Library’s MOOV eClassrooms programme. MOOV is short for Massive Open Online Varsities, and the e-classrooms are especially equipped library spaces where students can access MOOCS (Massive Open Online Courses) offered by MOOC-partnered universities from across the world. The e-classrooms are staffed by education specialists who guide students through their courses. Over 9,000 youth are currently studying through MOOV eClassrooms in public libraries in Johannesburg.
  • Petar Lukačić, head of Services for Adult Users at Public Library Fran Galovic in Koprivnica in northern Croatia. Petar will inform Festival participants about TEDxKoprivnicaLibrary, a knowledge-sharing programme in the library.  TEDx is an international community that organizes events based on the world-renowned TED method, which shares ideas through short, powerful talks by experts and innovators. Public Library Fran Galovic identifies local speakers, and the talks are open to everyone in the community. Public Library Fran Galovic is the first library in Europe to organize TEDx events.
  • Kemberley Constable, library assistant at Ti Rocher Library in Micoud, a village on the Caribbean island of St Lucia. Kemberley will share information about the library’s Girls Going Forward project, which teaches young women entrepreneurship skills, enabling them to start small businesses. One group of girls has developed a body scrub from cocoa and coconut oil, and is marketing the scrub online and selling it through local stores.
  • Biljana Kochishka, from Skopje City Library 'Braka Miladinovci' in Macedonia, who will speak about a pilot project in which people seeking careers meet professionals in different sectors (law, medicine, teaching, etc.) to learn more and help them make career choices.

The themes of the Next Library Festival 2017 are Literacy, The Learning Library, Emerging Trends, Community Engagement and Democracy, Strategic Partnerships, Design Thinking and Play. Participants, organizers and partners shape the programme, which includes co-learning and co-creative sessions, keynote speakers, social events, and visits to the newest and most innovative libraries, cultural institutions and technology innovators in Denmark.

Competition for the scholarships was tough. We had over 100 applications, of a very high standard. Thank you to everyone who applied, and who helped us share the invitation to apply.

The scholarships are funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to Next Library®.