UGANDA: ZELAYA LIBRARY PROJECT
The Zelaya Library Project is the "brain child" of Jay Zelaya, who guides the mission, vision, and daily operations of Zelaya Properties and Zelaya Homes in Alexandria, Virginia. Known locally for putting his heart and soul into everything he does, Jay has decided to place that same passion into his longtime dream of doing something special for the world's most vulnerable children.
"Success," says Jay, "is all about giving children without resources the tools they need to acquire knowledge. What better tool to cultivate the mind than a book?"
To provide children access to books, Jay's dream is to construct libraries where there are none, so that even the poorest and most vulnerable children still have an opportunity to acquire knowledge. His library is the first ever to be constructed in Kampala, Uganda's Kyebando Kisalosalo slums. The project not only builds a library and furnishes it with bookcases, tables, and chairs, but also supplies it with books. A one year salary for a librarian is also covered by the project, with income generating activities planned to cover operational expenses and the librarian's salary after the initial year.
Jay's dream of building libraries does not end in Kampala, but rather it starts there. "This is just the beginning," he says, as he explores where the next Zelaya Library will be constructed.