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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services, Education, International, International Relief, Libraries

Mission: We provide out-of-school and AIDS-affected orphans and vulnerable children in Africa (beginning in Zambia) safe havens that reconnect them with their culture and society at large while providing opportunities for education, literacy and self-improvement, while raising awareness in the U.S. about the impact of HIV/AIDS on Africa’s children.

Results: Lubuto’s ‘green’ buildings are carefully designed for sustainability. The substantial structures support many community activities and purposes and the particular needs of targeted orphans and vulnerable children (OVC).  Books and equipment can only be used in the libraries, an important sustainability factor.  That the beautiful facilities reflect and preserve indigenous culture inspires pride and emotional investment of community members, a level of cultural sustainability rarely achieved in educational infrastructure.

Target demographics: We serve vulnerable African children and youth, ages 5 - 18, particularly targeting street children, orphaned and out-of-school children and youth.

Direct beneficiaries per year: Each Lubuto Library has more than 50,000 visits per year. The primary beneficiaries of the Lubuto Library Project are OVCY in targeted communities (identified in consultation with government and local authorities), including street children, out-of-school youth, OVCY who have experienced trauma, and those living in dire, isolated or exploitive circumstances.

Geographic areas served: SubSaharan Africa

Programs: Reading and Preservation Program, Zambian Language Literacy Program, Motivational Mentoring Program, OLPC XO Laptop Program, Drama Program, Reading Program, Visual Arts Program, Early Childhood Programming Teen Program

Community Stories

87 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Lubuto is doing libraries are supposed to do: not just serve. Solve! This organization and its leadership are committed to solving tough issues facing Zambia's marginalized children ever-vigilant to respect and uplift the local culture. It is truly a great nonprofit!

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I continue to be impressed by this organization and the impact they are making. The staff of Lubuto is devoted to the mission and they never forget the individuals and communities they are serving. Lubuto Libraries are truly unique places and become destinations wherever they are built. I love the section on the website called Voices of Lubuto because it gives me a chance to see and hear directly from the patrons themselves and confirms that the work of this organization is making a huge difference. The dedication and vision of the leadership is a constant source of inspiration.

Previous Stories
2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

The Lubuto Library Project is a unique and special organization, doing amazing work for children that are marginalized and often ignored. One of the things that makes Lubuto Libraries so exceptional is the architecture of the libraries themselves. What struck me about the project when I first learned about it five years ago was the careful thought and consideration that went into the design of the library buildings. A Lubuto Library is more than a repository for books. It is a place of learning and community designed using traditional architectural features and uses of space. Having visited the Lubuto Library at the Fountain of Hope in Lusaka, I can attest to the success of its beauty and design. Lubuto Libraries are unique attractions in the city of Lusaka, and that fact is not lost on the children and teachers who visit them. Lubuto libraries look like no other building in the city and yet many comment that they feel so familiar and welcoming because they remind them of their villages. A Lubuto Library is a place of bustling activity, a place where kids can read in solitude or with friends; where they can gather in a circle and be read to; where they can perform plays or listen to storytellers. The architectural design is a central part of the mission of Lubuto, and communicates to children that their traditional heritage is important and valuable and viable. I haven’t seen any other organization that establishes libraries in Africa do what Lubuto has done, creating beautiful and special buildings with enviable resources for the most vulnerable and marginalized children. Lubuto Library Project is an organization that cares deeply about the communities it serves. It sees the potential in each individual child they reach and offers a place where these kids can begin to imagine a better future.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I serve as a volunteer for Lubuto Library Partners. I enjoy the community of volunteers and Board Members, and recall even receiving the insight of the actual architect of the libraries in Zambia once at our gathering. It is a joy to label and catalog the books in an ever improving database system and to place the books into delightful categories. The organization continually strives to utilize top professional lists of library books so as to have the best of the best for the children and young mothers in Zambia. In addition, the many activities at the libraries in Zambia engage the youth in unique ways to build community.

2

Board Member

Rating: 5

In May 2016, I visited a Lubuto Library in Lusaka, Zambia. I was pleased to witness the important role these libraries play in poor communities, particularly among vulnerable children. They provide a supportive environment for learning and recreation. They also give hope to communities that may not have access to good libraries.
Lubuto libraries play an important role in the dissemination of HIV/AIDS literature, and providing community based support to affected groups. The needs are huge and the number of vulnerable children continues to grow. A better resourced Lubuto Library will certainly provide better support to vulnerable children.

1 Karina V.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

That is a wonderful job!!!
It was a great privilege to have had the opportunity to help this nonprofit cataloging books for collections needing updating in Zambia.
May God continue to bless this great work of Lubuto Library Partners!

1 Anne142

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I recently began volunteering for the Lubuto Library Partners in DC helping to process materials. It is a privilege to be able to help prepare all of this wonderful children's literature for the Lubuto libraries. The Sunday afternoon volunteer group is a pleasure to work with and I am awed by everyone's dedication and knowledge.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Shy smiles and big grins: It's a pleasure to see pictures of the children who, though they might have experienced a lot of bad luck in the past, now enjoy some very good luck: they have access to one of the libraries and community centers that Lubuto has built and furnished. For many of these young patrons, this is a life-changing experience. Books! Computers! Art! And in beautiful traditional buildings designed just for them. Lubuto exemplifies a small non-profit that is a great non-profit, able to do amazing things.

Previous Stories
2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

One of the most impressive things about this organization is the amount it accomplishes with a tiny headquarters staff: one full-time person and the equivalent of one half-time person. The full-timer happens to be, of course, an incredibly dedicated, hard-working, indefatigable person, founder Jane Meyers, who could probably be counted as two. This kind of dedication rubs off on those who work with her; volunteers want to do their best for Lubuto, also. It all adds up to a wonderfully efficient non-profit.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been a volunteer with Lubuto for about three years to gain cataloging experience and fill time during a job search period. Although work and other life demands often keep me from doing as much as I'd like, I continue to come back to Lubuto because of the wonderful service it provides to the children of Zambia. Reading the stories of the children Lubuto Libraries help shows the importance of libraries as places of learning, community, and opportunity. Lubuto truly embodies what libraries are for, and I'm privileged to be able to help in the small ways I can.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been volunteering with Lubuto for the better part of this year, working on the Zambian Heritage Library project, in particular. One of the things that struck me the most when I first began volunteering was the commitment to ensuring that the youths at the libraries had access to local language materials that were culturally relevant. An assurance of content is not something you see with most library projects. Furthermore, a commitment to the preservation and access of endangered cultural heritage materials is truly going above their call of duty - but it is much needed and appreciated.

2 Greg71

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I started volunteering with Lubuto a year ago because it sounded interesting, and I thought it would be a good way to gain some cataloging experience (to supplement what I'd learned in classes). I kept volunteering because I was immediately struck by the genuine nature of the organization. Their goals are important, their methods are well-thought-out, and their warm welcome of new volunteers is impressive. I'm proud to help out with Lubuto and look forward to continuing to do so for the foreseeable future.