Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The High School in San Miguel will have a Library

It’s going to happen…there will be a school library at I.E. #11520 in the village of San Miguel (see the May 28 post to learn how this project started). Parent’s association members we are told are continuing to clean and paint; broken windows are being replaced and furniture will be delivered within the next two weeks. In addition to providing replacement glass and window protectors Promesa Peru is supplying 4 tables, 16 chairs and 2 book shelves.

Tomàs is a carpenter in the city of Picsi who has a reputation for quality work delivered on-time and will be constructing the library furniture. He was also the most reasonably priced of the 3 we talked with. The high school director Guadalupe and kinder director Yolanda accompanied us. It was interesting looking at his shop and the others we visited. There were no power tools that I saw and Tomàs confirmed that almost all the work is done by hand. Personally I would be lost amidst all that clutter but I’m sure he knows where everything is.

So hopefully around the end of June we’ll have a squeaky clean and well furnished library. What will be missing are books.

We know there are Peruvian expats in California, Florida, New Jersey and in many cities in many other countries reading this blog. To those readers and to Peruvians here in Peru (and anyone else for that matter), we’d like to ask this question: what book(s) did you read in primary or secondary that influenced you…that maybe inspired you to read further about a career, or some historical event or figure, or the fields of science, art or literature? Chances are that those students in I.E. #11520 would like that same opportunity. Seriously, we and the school staff would very much appreciate suggestions for book titles that can be found here in Peru. If you can afford to donate the money to buy the book, that would be a great help. Or if you’d like to mail a book directly to the school let us know at promesaperu2@gmail.com and we’ll get the address for you.

School director Guadalupe Gallardo is contacting alumni for book donations. Maribel’s son Brian during vacation this July is planning to head up a ‘book drive’ at the University of Piura in Piura and among his friends here in Chiclayo. We’ll be keeping our eyes open at Chiclayo’s new and used book stores looking for anything appropriate and in good condition.

“Education is the key” is a phrase that’s been parroted thousands, maybe millions of times but that doesn’t make it any less true. What better way to break the cycle of poverty than by keeping kids in school, and while there providing books to stimulate their minds and interests? Please help us. If you have book suggestions you can post them in ‘comments’ or contact us at promesaperu2@gmail.com. If you’d like to donate money for a book you can do that at the Promesa Peru webpage. Thank you.


  1. Book Worm WilliamJuly 6, 2014 at 5:34 PM

    I worked in a medical library for many years. I remember we were among the first people to know that the former Soviet Union was crumbling because we received a book donation request from a medical library in the Czech Republic in the early 90s.
    We sent them books and supplies in M-bags for a few years until unfortunately our budget no longer allowed it.
    My advice is to contact libraries and explain the situation.
    Also, perhaps the library will have the ability to receive information digitally.
    Sadly, print based materials are fast becoming a relic of the 20th century.
    Good luck!

  2. Hello William - thanks for the comment and advice. We had not thought about contacting other libraries. I’m not sure how we go about it but we’ll give it a try. The library in San Miguel won’t have a computer unless we give it to them, and we’re concerned about the $15 monthly internet cost. We don’t want to take on that obligation and don’t know if the village can/will do it.

    I share your lament regarding print based material. I was saddened when Borders closed. I wonder how long Barnes & Noble can hold out. Books have souls…they’re like old friends; each of them unique. I’ve looked at Kindle and other such devices but cannot bring myself to buy one. I can cozy up to a book – I can’t do that with plastic.