Shipping container’s library transformation well under way in Kenya thanks to Stevenage-based charity

The Kenyan children are enjoying painting the outside of their new library

The Kenyan children are enjoying painting the outside of their new library - Credit: Archant

The transformation of a shipping container into a library for deprived children in Africa is well under way.

Lenka McAlinden from Stevenage – founder of charity Just Be A Child – had appealed in the Comet for the community’s help to raise £5,000 needed to establish the library in Kenya, and now her dream is taking shape.

The 39-year-old was driven to action in 2013 following a trip to the country, and set up the cause to support children living there by building playgrounds and libraries, as well as handing out toys and sports equipment.

Lenka, of Lindens, has sent 7,500 donated books and other resources to Ukunda, and adults and children there have been working hard to convert the container into a library for the town.

She said: “The paint is making our library look fantastic. The community comes together every time the sun shines through the otherwise grey sky and works so incredibly hard on making this happen.

“It is taking longer than expected. We are still waiting for the windows, which will take another week.

“The children are so excited every time we open the heavily padlocked doors and, when asked if they would like to help us decorate the library, there is no holding them back.”

For more information about the charity, visit www.justbeachild.com.