Peace Corps Brings Bookmobile To Isolated Georgian Communities



Published on 24 January 2014

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by Office of the Spokesperson

(WireNews+Co)

Washington, D.C.

Peace Corps Volunteer Kristen Moses (Left) Has Helped Launch A Bookmobile In Georgia
Peace Corps Volunteer Kristen Moses (Left) Has Helped Launch A Bookmobile In Georgia

Peace Corps volunteer Kristen Moses of North Potomac, Maryland, recently joined U.S. Ambassador to Georgia Richard Norland and local community members to celebrate the launch of the country’s first bookmobile, a traveling bus that brings educational programming and resources to underserved communities.

In collaboration with a local nongovernmental organization and the U.S. Embassy, Moses worked to expand the embassy’s American Corners library project by using an old school bus donated from the United States to create the mobile learning center. The bookmobile has already reached more than 6,000 people across three settlements that are home to families displaced from South Ossetia following conflict in the region in 2008.

“In such isolated communities, any extra attention and after-school activities are a great opportunity for the young people,” said Moses. “This year, we hope to expand our reach and bring the bookmobile to more internally displaced persons settlements in the region.”

The bookmobile spends five days in each community and focuses on youth engagement. The interior of the school bus was gutted and outfitted with bookshelves, beanbag chairs and folding tables to create the feel of a real library. Inside, the bus features books in English for all reading levels, DVDs, laptops with wireless Internet access, and a projector and screen, among other resources. All are available free of charge to anyone in the community.

“Kids are able to practice their English skills and learn about American culture, while we also engage them on issues like environmental awareness, healthy lifestyle choices, job skills training, civic engagement and more,” Moses said.

The bookmobile project is funded by the U.S. Embassy through American Corners, a joint partnership project that promotes cooperation and understanding between the United States and Georgia by providing accurate information about the United States. American Corners are small, American-style libraries located within a local partner organization.

There are 71 Peace Corps volunteers in Georgia working in the areas of English education and community economic development. During their service in Georgia, they learn to speak Georgian. More than 515 Peace Corps volunteers have served in Georgia since the program was established in 2001.




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Posted 2014-01-24 09:47:00