“Language Should Not Be a Barrier to Good Health:” Books For Africa Sends Swahili Women’s Health Book to Tanzania

Books For Africa was pleased to partner recently with sponsor Greg Davis, the Pastoral Women Council in Arusha, and Emanyata School in Loliondo to get a shipment of books to Tanzania.

In addition to a variety of textbooks and leisure reading books for primary and secondary school students and adults, the shipment also included 7 new map libraries and a Girls Empowerment Collection for all ages: primary, secondary and adults.

Consignee Lakati Kulal provided feedback on the books as they arrived at Emanyata School, including some of the things the students were saying.

“I am grateful for the books because they improve my reading skills and I have more English vocabulary,” said Miriam Sepere.

Sian Nairoti expressed gratitude, saying “Thank you so much for the books, especially English novels. I like reading books because it improves my English vocabulary.”

This shipment of books included one very special optional add-on, which the recipients requested: a Swahili-language maternal and women’s health book by author Harriet Shangarai. Harriet, who holds BSN and RN degrees, has made it her mission to make critical health information accessible through language, with the motto “Language Should Not Be a Barrier to Good Health.”

She writes about how she created the book, entitled Mama Kijacho with an African woman in mind: “Having been a young expectant mother myself, facing language barriers and limited access to culturally and linguistically competent resources, I struggled to fully understand and engage in my pregnancy journey…. [A]ddressing maternal and infant mortality requires equipping our communities with the necessary tools to make informed decisions in a timely manner, ultimately saving lives.”

Books For Africa is now able to offer Mama Kijacho as an optional add-on to shipments going to Swahili-speaking populations. The recipients of the Emanyata shipment elected to receive 2 copies. Said recipient Sophia Paul, “Mama Kijacho is an interesting Swahili book that speaks more about the normal life we live at home, so it prepares me to understand my future life as an African mother.”

Books For Africa remains committed to serving its African recipients by providing books in the languages needed, through shipments of French, Spanish, and Portuguese language materials as well as through shipments of local language materials via its BFA Publishing Initiative.

Check out more photos from the shipment in our slideshow below, or on our Flickr album!

Emanyata Shipment, Tanzania