The work of the EIFL Public Library Innovation Programme demonstrates how public libraries can contribute to women’s empowerment and equality.
In partnership with the municipal labour office, Public Library ‘Braka Miladinovci’ in Macedonia motivates unemployed women to seek work through a service that includes job application and ICT training, and employment information. In Nepal, READ Information and Resource Centre’s capacity-building initiative empowers women and girls living in slums around Kathmandu through seminars and workshops on women’s rights, gender equality, health, violence against women and other issues, in addition to providing practical ICT and entrepreneurship training. Rija’tzuul Na’ooj Library in Guatemala has created a business centre where talented women weavers learn entrepreneurship skills and how to use ICT to market and sell their products online.
What people say
“I always feel welcome at the library and I receive help whenever I need it,” Rosalinda Tay of the Lema Artisans' Association, who participates in Rija’tzuul Na’ooj Library’s entrepreneurship empowerment programme.
“Getting a job is very hard. When I heard about the ICT training at the library, I applied and learnt to use computers. I met many other women - and what is most important for me is that I gained a huge self confidence.” - Violeta Behlimova, successful job-seeker, who attended ICT classes for women offered by Public Library ‘Braka Miladinovci’ in Macedonia.
“We could see their happiness clearly, and each had a new brightness shining in their eyes.” - psychologist Solange Lucena speaking about a group of women suffering from depression who had just completed a digital skills course offered by ‘Argentina Lopes Tristão’ Public Library in Brazil.