Advocacy for School Library Development

Lessons learnt from the Matenda School Library Project in Zimbabwe


  • Hosea Tokwe Midlands State University



Advocacy, Matenda School, Reading Material, School Libraries, Zimbabwe


The paper focuses on describing the importance and value for development of Rural School Libraries in Africa in order to overcome the increasing gap between the information rich and the information poor that currently threatens educational achievement in remote and inaccessible rural schools. It further discusses that main challenges faced when establishing and developing a rural school library to ensure that the socially excluded rural children have access to reading material. The question is - What are the materials and human resources needed to overcome these challenges. In conclusion, the paper offers recommendations that urge the government to establish School Library Service and to enact legislation to address the needs of rural schools in terms of infrastructure, equipment, material resources, appropriate manpower and the introduction of ICTs in rural schools to foster vital knowledge necessary to address local needs.

Author Biography

Hosea Tokwe, Midlands State University

The author Mr. Hosea Tokwe is a Chief Library Assistant in the Special Collections Department, Midlands State University Library, and Gweru, Zimbabwe. He has worked as Assistant Librarian and College Librarian at Mkoba Teachers College from 1991 to 2005. Mr. Hosea Tokwe has been a member of American Library Association, Academic College and Research Libraries, and Library Administration and Management Association from 2002 to 2007.At present he is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals and the current National Treasurer of the Zimbabwe Library Association. He is pro-activeness in School Libraries, particularly the role he played helping in the establishment and successfully launching of the Matenda School Library Project in rural Zimbabwe won him the 2012 ILIG International Award. This year he was included in the Library Journal top 50 “Movers and Shakers” for voluntary library work and contribution to the Matenda community.