“When refugees from the Congo rioted over drastically reduced food rations at Burundi’s Kavumu refugee camp a few weeks ago, they left one barrack unharmed amid their stone throwing. The building they spared contained a portable library – for many refugees their only contact with books or the outside world. The library had arrived in a cleverly constructed box on wheels, which unfolded in 20 minutes to reveal desks, chairs, laptop computers, books, e-readers and video camera equipment. Known as the ‘Ideas Box’, the brightly coloured boxes had been delivered by a Paris-based charity, Libraries Without Borders, providing an oasis of learning in the camp.” (via Research Information)
“Tuesday night at the New York Public Library, an organization called Libraries Without Borders will unveil its latest project: a library in a box. More accurately, it’s a library in multiple boxes—lightweight, durable and waterproof—designed to be packed onto shipping pallets and sent to refugee camps.
The idea is that food, water and shelter aren’t enough, said Patrick Weil, the group’s founder and chief executive, and a visiting professor at Yale Law School. People who have lost everything, he said, need books, films, games and Internet access to feed their minds, connect with loved ones, pursue education and rebuild their lives.” (via WSJ.com)