Mission & Vision
Book Bunk was founded in October 2017 by a writer and publisher duo; Wanjiru Koinange and Angela Wachuka. Our formation is rooted in a love for literature and storytelling, and the belief that art is a major catalyst for transformational social change. We envision libraries as the homes of a people’s intellectual wealth – places where we can go to learn about who we are; and as centres where art and artistic practice can be nurtured, protected, shared and celebrated. We are changing Nairobi by restoring some of the city’s most iconic public libraries into sites of inclusivity, heritage, public art, collective memory, knowledge production, shared experiences and cultural exchange.
In March 2018, we formalised a milestone partnership with the Nairobi City County government which established our mandate to lead the restoration of three libraries; McMillan Memorial Library, Eastlands Library and Kaloleni Library. Our work includes sourcing and management of financial and in-kind support; steering architectural restoration, management of the library spaces and design & delivery of arts and skills-based programming. Following our physical restoration projects as well as public programming, two of these three libraries are now in use by the general public, serving children, youth and adults in new and enriching ways.
Our approach to restoration
We’re working to transform what people do at the library. We believe that these spaces can continue to nurture academic and literary pursuits, while also providing a home for diverse and accessible programmes and events that are free from political or religious agenda and that celebrate art, well being and learning.
Coordinate the physical renovation of these spaces while ensuring their historical integrity is maintained and showcased. We’re also committed to ensuring the communities living around these spaces are the primary beneficiaries of each of these projects.
We want to build ‘Palaces for The People’; public, inclusive and safe spaces where Nairobi’s residents can access whatever they need be it legal advise, tax education, or a neutral space to commune and network. This, in a bid to explore what public space really means in this city.
We’re working to introduce technology into every aspect of these libraries: access control, collections management, online catalogues as well as digital skills training for librarians and library users. We want the digital lives of these libraries to match that of the digital possibilities of Nairobi.