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NLP Plans National Development for Public Libraries

Ensuring quality over quantity, addressing the lack of space and inadequate funding as well as the level of support available, questions on jurisdiction and supervision, and exploring possible means of income generation such as the collection fees are merely the tip of the veritable iceberg of issues facing the public libraries and public librarians in the Philippines. However, legislations affecting public libraries which could address these issues have not been thoroughly explored and given sufficient attention. Thus, the National Library of the Philippines (NLP), as the central node of public libraries in the Philippines, and through the initiative of the Director’s Office in cooperation with its Public Library Division, intends to mount efforts geared towards the formulation of a National Development Plan for Public Libraries. Integral to this aim are the four (4) round table discussions that the NLP intends to hold for the month of March. The expected output is a Legislative Agenda containing recommendations that will be consolidated from the discussions of issues and concerns among public librarians throughout the country. To this end, the Public Libraries Division of the NLP has selected librarians from various municipal, provincial, city and congressional libraries from all regions, which has been organized into four clusters, one each for Luzon, Visayas, Mindanao and NCR.

In celebration of the 112th Public Library Day, the NLP will conduct the pilot Round Table Discussion on March 9, 2012 (Friday), 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. at the Director’s Office Conference Room, NLP Building, T.M. Kalaw St., Emita, Manila. The theme of the activity is “Legislative Agenda towards a National Development Plan for Public Libraries”. NLP has identified the Provincial Government of Pangasinan for Luzon, City Government of Cebu for Visayas on March 28, 2012 at the Cebu City Library and City Government of Davao for Mindanao on March 30, 2012 at the Davao City Library to be the NLP’s host for the respective cluster.  In partnering with local governments, the NLP aims to establish and strengthen its ties with LGU’s. Output from the said workshop will be presented during the Annual Conference of Public Librarians in Baguio City in November, 2012.

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