Community Library

By creating a library to serve students, their families and the surrounding community, the Asturias Academy hopes to foster a love of reading and ultimately shift societal attitudes toward literacy and education.

Most Guatemalans are restricted from obtaining a quality education due to a severe lack of access to books and literacy materials. In a country where books are taxed beyond the reach of the 75% of the population who live in poverty, it is almost impossible to get low-income children excited about reading because they cannot get actual books in their hands. This year, Guatemalan public schools were only able to supply math books to 6th graders, leaving all other students without books to study. Through after-school reading programs, reading exchanges with students abroad, and using the library as a space for community and cultural events, the Asturias Academy is committed to fostering a love of reading and promoting educational equality.

Since 2009, the Asturias Academy has partnered with Librarians Without Borders in the development of the library. Librarians Without Borders McGill members participated in a service learning trip in April 2010, working in the library and bringing with them books and plans. In April 2011, Librarians Without Borders representatives visited the Academy a second time to continue the project by expanding the library’s collection, programming, and services to eventually serve the wider community of Xela.


  • $20 sponsors a storytime for a grade for a month
  • $40 sponsors five books for a reading group
  • $150 sponsors a classroom set of a chapter book
  • $250 sponsors the librarian for one month


  • Books (Spanish-language)
  • Printers
  • Library Software
  • Library Data Entry
  • Computer and Computer Equipment
  • Library Furniture