The third Lubuto library, and the first rural library, is located in Zambia’s Southern Province in the community of Nabukuyu—23 km east of Monze. From the beginning, the community named the library "Mumuni," the Chitonga word that means the same as "lubuto": light, enlightenment and knowledge.
The Mumuni Library opened in November 2014, but it was eight years in the making. Advisory Board member Mark Chona worked hard with us during those eight years to bring his dream of a library in that community to fruition. Mr. Chona's Matantala Rural Integrated Development Enterprise (MRIDE) had coordinated the development and funding of three area Chieftaincies, planned according to the customary approaches of such traditional authorities, where the people guide their development plans.
This library was carefully constructed to be suited for a rural community in Southern Province. Mumuni Library's design represents local Tonga culture. Parting from Lubuto’s three-structure libraries in Lusaka, this library features a fourth building that serves as a "youth center," a dedicated space for teenagers and young adults.
From the moment the doors first opened, users flocked to the Mumuni Library, delighting in all it had to offer. Compared to the Lusaka libraries, we see a far greater number of very young mothers visiting the library with their young children. Therefore, the library not only offers early childhood learning opportunities, but also opportunities for mothers to learn as well. The community and their new public library are working together to create programs and approaches, especially to outreach, that best suit them.