Tuesday, July 14, 2015

The Library Hub in Quezon Province

Last June 30, I was in Lucena, Quezon Province for a whole day workshop on storytelling with day care workers. Right after, Madame Rose Villamater whisked me away to the Quezon Province Library Hub. There I met Apol Mijares, librarian in charge of the library hub for the division; Ma'am Lorena Walangsumbat, EPS and Division Library Hub Coordinator; and Supervisor Ma'am Gerlie Ilagan.

The Quezon Province Library Hub is one of the biggest hubs in the region. It is well funded and staffed sufficiently. It has the basics of a physical library: storytelling area, a space for children to read, a meeting room, an AV section, a circulation counter and shelves stacked with crates and crates of books. The staff of the library hub organized a project to bring these crates of books to far flung schools in Quezon through the Hatid Dunong Project, a mobile library model. No wonder it was awarded as the Best Library Hub in the Philippines!

Last year, I have been to the Calamba Library Hub and yes, I was amazed at the zeal of the librarians working there. In the Quezon Province Library Hub, the administrative support is very evident indeed. If anything, these are indicators of success as far as operational functions of the library hubs are concerned. I now ask myself,  how is the library hub's relevance and impact evaluated. Its main purpose is to bring books closer to children. If access to books is already being fulfilled what measure of effectiveness does it have in strengthening reading habits, and in DepEd culture, improving test scores. I wonder if these factors were considered during the planning and conceptual stage of the library hub. 

We have merely scratched the surface. There is more to be done. And this needs a lot of thought. Creative thought.

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