“The mobile self-organized library of Cityplaza is increasingly enlarging. Not only now with additional donations, we can provide almost 500 books for adults and children in Farsi, Arabic and English, but also that the demand from the residents of the squat has incredibly increased since the first day we started the project. Yesterday, I and Isabel Gutierrez Sanchez handed 47 books in less than 2 hours.
The library has indeed very loyal visitors, who read 4-5 books per week. Alaa from Syria was asking me if we’d bring new books since he read almost all the Arabic books for adults in less than two months. The children of Cityplaza are making huge cues to be able to have a book even if they cannot read yet, to be able to hold a book in their hands. The smaller kids with curiosity are asking older ones the letters, trying to learn Arabic, Farsi, Greek and Latin alphabets. Do not be surprised if some of them actually learn reading before the average age.
I was 5 years old when I had learned how to read on my own hiding in the bathroom of our house at nights with the books of my older sister after everyone went to sleep. I still remember those precious and peaceful moments, the exciting feeling of discovering a new world. Books are not only extremely significant for education but also for opening up our minds and hearts to outside world, and indeed beyond that as far as our imagination takes us away.
So many men, women and children are trapped in this city as refugees due to the cruelty of the political, economic and social system which feeds on wars, human trafficking, imperial and capitalist exploitation, religious conflicts and nationalism, and of course closed borders. But, life has not ended for them. Indeed, being suffered enough, yet still hoping themselves a better future, they hold on to life much more than us who live in our comfort zones, anxious to face with every change that could challenge us. I am though happy to see so many refugees holding the books as tight as they hold to their dreams. I appreciate that they make me once more feel like at my 5th age, where I did not see books as easily reachable, but valuable just because I could hold one.
Thank you everyone who brought books, especially to Giovanna Stopponi and REACT (Refugee Education Across Conflicts Trust) for generous donations.
We still need more books, especially Farsi books for adults, Arabic reading books for children, and books in Urdu language. And we’d all appreciate if you wanted to give us your solidarity for this library. ”
You can read the original facebook post by Esra Dogan HERE