Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Library News From Near and Far

Over the past few days, I have been inundated by bits and pieces of library news.

First is about this PM I got from a friend who is currently residing in Canada. His kids got their library cards from the local public library. What amazed him and his wife was the fact that even infants are given library cards. That only goes to show that children should not be deprived of their right to literacy and access to information. More than a love of reading, the library has a role to play in actualizing the basic human rights of people. Children included. A library is an institution that promotes the basic tenets of freedom of information for all.

Does the news make a librarian happy? Even envious, I would say for the reality of public library services in the country is dismal. Sure, there are cities with flourishing libraries in the National Capitol Region. But Manila, in spite of its rich history and commercial status is not the entire Philippines.

This being said, I was disappointed learning of the news on the plans of demolishing the library at UP Mindanao. Details are vague. I got wind of the news via Facebook. It's viral so facts are not easy to establish.

I could not help but reflect on the work that I do for the past year -- building libraries and helping teachers become advocates of reading and literacy. The task gets difficult every year with every technological upgrade.

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