In an effort to promote reading culture among female prisoners in the country, a fourth-year Theology and Religious Studies student at Mzuzu University (Mzuni), Oscar Kameta, has embarked on an initiative aimed at sourcing books for Mzuzu Prison, specifically female section.
The initiative is called dDonate a book at Mzuzu Prison Female Section Initiative.
In an interview, Kameta who is a founder of the initiative said Mzuzu Prison Female Section has a library which lacks books although the arrangement is accommodative and inclusive that even female outsiders use the facility, a situation that is fostering interaction between inmates and outsiders.
He said the interaction in turn helps the outsiders get the desired information from the library and the female inmates get the psychological support.
” As the female outsiders come to the library and read books, they do find information which is useful in their daily lives and the inmates get the psychological support from their friends who come to source information in the library which is also very important to their health”, said Kameta.
Kameta added that inmates engage themselves into bad and toxic behaviors, since they have too much idle time due to lack of books in their library and that some lack what he calls bibliotherapy to remain focused, educated, entertained among others.
” It is in in this context the initiative proposed to conduct fundraising activities, engaging well-wishers and corporate world for sponsorship, collaborations and partnerships in sourcing the books for Mzuzu Prison Female Section”, he said.
In his words, one of the lecturers in the Department of Communication Studies at the University, Ziliro Mchulu, appreciated Kameta for coming up with an initiative saying it will help in promoting reading culture among the prisoners as well as improve their psychological health.
” This is a very helpful initiative. We hope that through this, many female inmates will now be able to read. And again, this will help improve the psychological health for the prisoners as they will be able to interact with female outsiders. The initiative deserves support,” said Ziliro.
Kameta said so far, Phinex Sight Saver, GrandPen Publication and the Mzuzu University Writers Forum have shown interest to be part of the initiative and still calling other well-wishers to freely come, join, partner, collaborate, or sponsor the initiative in sourcing more extra books for the section.
He said for sponsorship, donations, partnerships, collaborations, or any other enquiries, contact him on 0888087786/0998260618/ [email protected]
Apart from being a University student, Oscar Kameta is also a book author who recently published In the Hands of Beast novel, a compelling story of life of minors under an unjust and oppressive society.