Kiswa Community Library and Recource Centre (KCL) is a legally registered community-based organisation in Nakawa division, Kampala. The library was founded in March 2010 and was registered in October of the same year. The library is operating from a small office, with one bookshelf on the wall, with no reading space. But users, mainly university students, borrow from among the 50 novels and textbooks to read at home. The library has plans of reaching out to some of the nearby primary schools with a mobile library service in the near future.
The Library also offers secretarial services against a fee, including type-setting, printing, scanning and binding for purposes of sustainability.
Kiswa is located south-east of central Kampala and is dominated by poor residential and commercial structures, including slum dwellings. There are about seven primary schools and four major secondary schools within walking distance, but most users come from Makerere University Business School, a nearby college.
The library was started in March 2010 to address issues of illiteracy and povery in the nearby slum areas of Kampala.
There are currently no programmes or activities at the library since it is quite newly established and has few books.
The office space currently used is courtesy of the director, Kato Peter. The first batch of books were also provided by him. A few additional books have been donated by individuals, The African Prisons Project (a UK registered charity), and CDs with e-textbooks and computer programmes.
The librarian has a computer and a desk, and there is a photocopier as part of the business. One shelf keeps all the books; about 50 novels, 6 storybooks and 3 university textbooks and 10 magazines. In addition there are two CDs with textbooks and programmes that can be copied (by bringing an empty CD) or borrowed.
The person who operates the office, either Kato Peter or Damalie Kalibala, doubles as a librarian when users come by.
KCL governance comprises a General Assembly, a patron and an Executive Committee. The General Assembly comprises all members who have subscribed to our constitution, and it is the supreme body of the organisation. The library’s constitution mandates the Executive Committee to call annual general meetings which provide an opportunity to discuss the overall direction for KCL programmes and work, approve the annual reports, financial reports and endorse future programme activities.
Next to the General Assembly is the patron. This person provides oversight function, ensuring that the executive committee doesn’t overstep its mandate and he/she also acts as a lobby and advocate for the work of the organisation. The Executive Committee oversees the implementation and day-to-day running of the organizational activities. It oversees the development of KCL policies and recruits staff. The executive committee meets once in every three months to discuss and approve quarterly reports, budgets and programme work plans.
Currently students from the nearby college constitute the main body of users.
Borrowed books are recorded in a designated notebook. Kato Peter submits an annual report to the General Assembly.
The library opening hours coincide with the office opening hours, which are 09:00 am to 07:00 pm on weekdays, and 09:00 am to 03:00 pm on Saturdays.
Kiswa Community Library & Resource Centre
Plot 8 Bishop Campling Rd. Kiswa-Bugolobi
Taxi from Old Taxi Park to Bugolobi Market (6 km). Get off at Bugolobi main taxi stage, and walk or take a boda-boda 1 km up a windy, up-hill road, asking for Kiswa Primary school. The library is only 30 metres after the school (there is a signpost outside the library).
Kiswa Community Library
PO Box 40019 Kampala
Library: 0414 505 246
Kato Peter (director): 0782 561 212
Kato Peter (director): firstname.lastname@example.org