Cite Soleil Library
We are supporting the mission of our Haitian friends from Cite Soleil to build a modern, community-supported library in Cite Soleil, the poorest slum of Haiti. The approach is to be completely community-led and transparent. The vision of this project is not only to build a library in Cite Soleil, but to build a first-class, modern library and community service center.
Some people have balked at the plans, saying it seems too nice and too expensive. The co-initiators of Konbit Bibliyotèk Site Solèy are trying to shake this conception and ask: why don’t the young people of Cite Soleil deserve first-class facilities? After decades of people in Cite Soleil being treated like second-class citizens, this project aims to raise the standards of what people in Cite Soleil can expect and what they feel they deserve.
The project may take time to complete, but we will not compromise our view of what our young people deserve. The library and community center, upon its completion, will have the following spaces and services:
• A library that includes a children’s section, which will host book clubs, debates, and tutoring sessions
• An informatics center with computers, which will teach computer classes and offer internet access and online learning opportunities
• An auditorium, which can be used to host cultural events, conferences, and community meetings
• A playground for young children
• Other support facilities, such as restrooms, a cafeteria space, and an administrators’ office The library was designed by Jennifer Andou Charles, who was born in Cite Soleil. The following are her designs for the library complex :