Like all things great, we will begin with a story. Our story.
Our mission is to set up a library in every school in India and make reading accessible to all. True to our motto, we want each child to "Read, Imagine, Grow"!
At Share A Book India Association, we believe that reading must become a focus area and a movement which involves everyone in order to improve the literacy standards prevalent across India.
The idea is to let no child be a school dropout, empower them with basic comprehension skills, and most importantly avoid students going beyond primary education without fully mastering lifelong skills. We try to introduce the pleasure of reading to those that are unable to read despite wanting to. Our goal of having a library for all such that there are books in the hand of every child is more than just a target. It is an ideology that will benefit students excel in all the spheres of their life and help them towards being responsible citizens of the world.
Going beyond just reading books, we also want to inculcate team spirit, creativity, observation, curiosity and others crucial aspects through various kind of engaging activities in our Library Development Program.
issUes we address
Reading is not a luxury. Books are for everyone
Books help children step out of their comfort zone slowly into the world, and broaden their horizons and imaginations. Access to education is everyone’s birthright. Through our initiative of building libraries, we hope to bring students near to the age old written medium of books. Through their rich, diverse variety, books can grant children the vision to dream beyond their circumstances. But unfortunately, many people may consider them a luxury. We intend to change that. A book is not a luxury: it is meant to be a common ground for one and all.
Reduce school dropouts by eradicating the concept of fear of language
A lot of students feel a great deal of stress when they are unable to cope with the spoken part of a second language and it often impairs them in more ways than one. For instance, their self-esteem or self-confidence takes a back seat when they perhaps see their acquaintances picking it up easier than they did. As a result, many students give up and simply become dropouts which reduces their possibilities for proper employment opportunities. There are various simple techniques which can be used to overcome this cycle, and SABIA incorporates them into the library routine.
Strengthen reading skills, an elementary part of the foundation on which a child's education rests.
A lot of one’s success depends on their ability to read. There are very few people who have succeeded in the world without any literary background. As such, we aim to build this basic level foundation because that's the only thing which can ensure a strong and worthy structure. And in this case, an individual is no less than a building which needs the best framework to stand properly against the environment.
Rote to creative learning
Increase their knowledge base and polish their basic concepts of English. Like we noted before, many students often dropout just because of their inability to understand the textbooks. As such, we start with the basic concepts so that we can monitor the points where each individual is weak and we can work on. Moreover, we hope to make children acknowledge the difference between simply memorizing something and truly learning it.
Teach them team-spirit, creativity, observation, curiosity and others through various kinds of engaging activities along with read aloud session. Through the various activities that we carry out, we try to imbibe the bond of humanity among the students. We all know that being literate simply does not mean that one is educated. As such, we place a lot of importance on personality development as well through self and group activities, so as to develop the team spirit in the students. We also try to imbibe the qualities of curiosity and inquisitiveness, creativity, observation and others, through them.
Universal quality education. Raising a generation of thinkers, readers and leaders
Lastly, through our efforts we hope to influence the youngsters- the future of the country, in a healthy and intellectual manner, so that they may too, grow up and become responsible members of the society, and they in turn, will be influenced to help others. We hope to make sure that the future coming generations only prove to be greater than we can possibly have dreamt to be, especially when these youngsters are so very full of potential.
Getting a book to read is a luxury, when it comes to students of a large part of India. Most of us first experienced reading in a huge library with shelves stuffed with books and a librarian who gave us those ‘pin drop silence’ looks. However, in the lesser privileged sections of our society, there are children unknown to the joy of reading and schools without books and libraries. SABIA, with its proper survey and research, proceeds with a systematic establishment of these libraries ensuring formalization of the system through its Library Development Program.
For the students benefitting through the Library Development Programme (LDP) of SABIA, Saturdays are eagerly awaited, to rush back to school and to get lost in the wonderland of mysterious worlds and words that their new books have introduced them to. The volunteers, who are associated with SABIA, dedicate twelve Saturdays over the course of LDP for three months with the aim to leave their partnered school and its students’ lives enriched with a formal library system. To begin with, they set up a library committee of the students themselves, who are assigned various tasks and responsibilities in maintaining the books and records. Supplementary to this is the book circulation programme which ensures that books reach every child in a regular and systematic way.
The carefully researched modules strive to personalize these experiences for the children by appointing them as the monitors of these books, this being one of the common reasons for them to keep visiting the library. Students are made active in leadership roles thereby, aiding them in their roles of being future leaders. Reading out to oneself can be a lazy task for some of us, isn’t it? What if somebody read these textbooks to us in schools with proper enactment? Here comes, the most engaging task of the SABIA volunteers to hold the children back from turning all the pages in a rush. The animated voices of Chotta Bheem and Chutki stay in their memory. The expressions one creates, while reading a book definitely grab the curiosities of the kids. SABIA volunteers read out these stories in a captivating way of high and low pitched voice notes to communicate the right emotions. Through this act, Emotional Intelligence of these children is deliberately enhanced by SABIA’s reading program.
The children are also encouraged to read books on their own and are rewarded with ‘reading jewels’ when they finish one. Quite similar to the smileys and stars that we got from the teacher on a test. The ‘reading jewels’ are again aimed to develop an interest and to drive the children to reading books.
Considering the aspect of quantifying and achieving a fruitful outcome from the reading program, SABIA also makes periodic assessments of the children’s vocabulary and its usage.
Do you remember keeping your head down while the question answer session took place in class? No worries, SABIA involves its learners in fun monthly assessments to understand their progress instead of judging them. Soon after, the weak areas are worked upon. Does writing a book review sound very ‘authoritative’ for a kid? Well, not here. Children at SABIA are encouraged to write their thoughts out, as book reviews, adding their essence to the books that they have read. Most of us have decorated pieces of paper from our childhood, filled with our thoughts on various things. Don’t we? Time to check our kiddies’ trunks!
Nevertheless, it is time that we tell these children stories, so that their stories will not go untold. SABIA welcomes every kid, to their favorite black boards and classroom walls to paint their stories. We give them a chance to build their treasure in their kiddies’ trunks, to open it sometime in future and bring back their ‘storyfied’ memories.
With all these features, SABIA’s LDP is an interactive and self-sustaining model, which can keep itself alive even with very low amount of resources. It however, needs able volunteers and children who want to exist in this world of beautifully told stories, fun activities and roles of leadership. Trust us, that includes every child there is in this big big world!
Director & Co-founder
Srishti is an engineer, educator, explorer and a poet. Share A Book, India Association is her baby and has grown under her guidance since day one. Her vision is to help India become a country of imaginative thinkers, questioners and innovators. She believes that there can be no substitute for reading when it comes to expanding a child's imagination. "A good book compels us to paint a picture in our heads that we might not have been able to come up with just by ourselves. Not just that, as children we are more curious and hungry for answers, books let us know that we are never alone in our journey be it whatever background one comes from. They become our best friends, our teachers and for some of us, our family.", she reasons. Her favourite book (although there can be no such singular thing) is The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand and argues that Holden Caulfield should be treated with the respect any literary hero deserves. Srishti lists her journey across nine states of India and over two hundred and fifty poems written in just under a year as her other major accomplishments but she admits that nothing compares to the feeling of giving a child a real chance at a quality education and life.
CEO & Co-founder
Priti is a dentist and humanitarian, devoted to fulfilling her passion for the upliftment of the marginalised masses of India. It was her engagement with the principal of a local school for a similar cause that made us disturbingly aware of the lack of books in the lives of children from economically backward classes and led to the founding of our organisation.
Three things that you're guaranteed to find on her person are - good books, good mood and good food. Other than reading, Priti enjoys baking, travelling, photography and spending time with her loved ones. The book she lives by is To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee.