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Empowering Communities through Project LARA: A Celebration of Knowledge and Collaboration

November 10, 2023

A historic occasion unfolded at the Baler Sports Complex in Baler, Aurora, on November 10, 2023, marking the culmination of months of dedicated effort—the Turn-over of Project LARA. This momentous event brought together Project LARA Team, stakeholders, and community members, creating an atmosphere charged with excitement and anticipation for the turn-over of a project designed to be a beacon of knowledge and collaboration.


Project LARA, standing for Library Affiliation and Resource Allocation, was conceived with the vision of nurturing an environment where knowledge and collaboration thrive. Spearheaded by a dynamic team of librarians, local government officials, and community leaders, the initiative aimed to bridge educational gaps and provide a platform for holistic development in the region. From conceptualization to meticulous execution, Project LARA showcased the remarkable outcomes achievable when diverse minds unite for a common cause.


The ceremony, led by the passionate Director Cesar Gilbert Q. Adriano, saw the presence of esteemed guests, including Hon. Rommel Rico T. Angara, District Representative Aurora, and Hon. Rhett Ronan T. Angara, Mayor of Baler and President of the League of Municipal Mayors, alongside local leaders, librarians, officers-in-charge, NLP employees, and other dignitaries.


Project LARA Achievements

Director Adriano proudly announced the successful affiliation with seven public libraries in the Province of Aurora and one in Tibiao, Antique—the Senate President Edgardo J. Angara Community Library. The Negros Occidental Provincial Library was also recognized as a recipient of these valuable resources, significantly strengthening the project’s network and emphasizing the crucial role played by the public libraries involved.


A Grateful Acknowledgment

Director Adriano expressed deep gratitude to Senator Juan Edgardo “Sonny” M. Angara for his generous sponsorship of Project LARA. Senator Angara’s unwavering support was acknowledged as instrumental in the project’s success, reflecting a shared dedication to the cause of education and knowledge. Recognition was also extended to everyone who contributed to Project LARA, including Congressman Rommel Rico T. Angara, Mayor Rhett Angara, library partners, government agencies, and all supporters.


Enriching Lives through Resources

The resources provided through the LARA Project were highlighted as beacons of learning and enlightenment, poised to enrich the lives of countless individuals. These resources, distributed among various libraries, cover a diverse array of materials to cater to the needs of a broad audience, ranging from children and students to senior citizens.


The LARA Project provided diverse materials for a broad audience including Filipiniana and foreign Books, encyclopedias, fiction and non-fiction ebooks, educational toys and games, e-subscription to MyLegalWhiz, Proquest Databases, and Britannica Library, and other resources tailored for varied library users like famous Filipino movies


Librarian Capacity Building

Integral to the success of Project LARA is the commitment to capacity building for librarians. The project included comprehensive training programs covering topics such as Mechanical Processing of Books, Accessing Library E-resources, and Cataloging.


Local Histories and Culture Preservation

A significant aspect emphasized during the event was the importance of preserving local histories and culture. As part of Project LARA, recipient libraries will spearhead projects dedicated to preserving and sharing local histories, further emphasizing the broader significance of this cultural preservation initiative.


Formalizing Partnerships for Empowerment

The signing of the Deed of Donations and Property Transfer Reports symbolized the formalization of a partnership that goes beyond the transfer of physical resources. It represented a collective pledge to work collaboratively towards empowering communities, especially the youth, through knowledge and education.


A Call to Responsibility

Director Adriano stressed the responsibility that comes with the abundance of knowledge, urging the audience to nurture and protect these resources, ensuring their accessibility to generations to come.


Advocacy for Replication

While expressing gratitude for the opportunity to organize these “Dream Libraries,” the Project Team conveyed hope that other politicians would be inspired to replicate such projects, especially in far-flung provinces where investing in human resources is imperative.


Project LARA, a testament to collaborative effort, was meticulously handled by the Public Libraries Division headed by Ms. Blesila P. Velasco, in collaboration with the Collection Development Division led by Ms. Melody M. Madrid and the Information Technology Division led by Mr. Leonardo P. Bernabe.

Amidst the complex web of tasks and responsibilities, the guidance and wholehearted support of National Library of the Philippines Director Cesar Q. Adriano served as the bedrock for the project’s success. His visionary leadership and unwavering commitment were instrumental in navigating the complexities of Project LARA, ensuring its realization and impact.


Recommitting to Cultural and Educational Enlightenment

In closing, Director Cesar Gilbert Q. Adriano called for a collective recommitment to the noble cause of cultural and educational enlightenment. The audience was encouraged to continue working together to expand community horizons, empower the youth, and build a brighter future for the nation through the transformative power of libraries and knowledge.


A Future Filled with Opportunities

The event concluded with a hopeful gaze towards the future, anticipating boundless opportunities and growth through the ongoing impact of libraries and knowledge. In essence, the Ceremonial Turnover of Library Resources for Project LARA was not just a conclusion but a celebration of collaboration, knowledge, and the promising future that these shared resources hold for the communities they serve.


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