Lubuto Libraries

Lubuto constructs enduring open-access libraries whose design is inspired by traditional and contemporary social, economic and cultural patterns and which freely offer comprehensive collections of well-chosen books and technology resources. These libraries serve as safe havens and are the center for dynamic library programming offering education, psychosocial support and self-expression through reading, music, art, drama, computers, mentoring and other activities.

It is our policy to source craftsmen, labor and materials locally when possible. Eleni Coromvli—the architect for Lubuto libraries—focuses her designs on providing maximum functionality and sustainability.  The comfortable, welcoming and inspiring environments provide a place where youth feel at home and connected to their roots.

Lubuto libraries have multiple buildings, following the traditional pattern of homesteads in Zambia. Outside seating and spaces between the buildings also create a performance space and venue for social gatherings. The Reading Room houses the book collection and features reading alcoves and a central “talking circle” for reading, teaching, group activities and performances.  The Arts and Activities room accommodates computer use, visual arts and writing programming.  The entrance “Insaka” features a sink where users can wash their hands before entering the other buildings, and also serves as a meeting and communication space that is ideal for drama and storytelling.

Mumuni Library—the first rural Lubuto library—features a fourth building that offers programming and a safe community space for teens and young adults.