Library For All
New York, USA
Like thousands of people around the world, Rebecca McDonald's heart broke when she saw pictures of post-earthquake Haiti flash across her TV screen. She and her husband traveled to Port-au-Prince to help out. There she witnessed a problem that ran deeper than the country's immediate challenge to clear rubble. Haiti's classrooms contained virtually no books. Knowing that literacy is a direct route out of poverty—and that mobile technology is revolutionizing the developing world—Rebecca and Tanyella Evans founded Library For All, now known as NABU.
Library For All is an innovative, cloud-based library platform that gives children in developing countries access to age-appropriate books in their own language through e-readers and mobile networks. It's a scalable model that is wildly exceeding its founders' growth projections: Since its inception in 2012, Library For All now runs programs with partner schools in Haiti, Cambodia, Mongolia, Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo, with more locations in the works. Library For All's communications team lacked the organizational infrastructure and core messaging strategy to keep up.
I led a five-person team to find a solution. We delved into Library For All's existing workflow and designed a visual, intuitive content creation process that tracks a story from idea to publication. We handed over a working framework and recommended best practices for generating ideas, repurposing content, and increasing social media engagement. Finally, we identified areas where the organization can improve its message—making people understand just how widespread internet use is in Africa, for instance. When this plan is implemented, Library For All will have better capacity for growth and for achieving awareness of its core belief: that knowledge is a basic human right.
“Melissa, brilliant leader of Library For All’s Net Impact team, has changed the way that Library For All creates content to communicate to our stakeholders—partners, donors, supporters. As an avid world traveler, Melissa immediately recognized how our digital library can impact illiteracy in developing countries by way of widespread technology. Her knowledge through past experience allowed her to uniquely contribute to framing Library For All’s messaging and constructing a process for distributing content.”
—Katherine Stephans, Partnerships & Communications Manager
Photo: Respire Haiti