Thursday, November 15, 2007

The third sector @ the library

Most people thought that working in a library is easy, especially in public library. For public libraries, I am used to the assignment of staff with having a little knowledge and appreciation of the library… worst with people who do not read any. Thus, I maintain a small organization in naga library. It follows a premise that the smaller the organization, the easier it is to handle. Instead of requesting for additional staff, I depend on volunteers.

Last 2004, I met Nick Hake, an American Peace Corps volunteer assigned in jp2 reading center. Though he was assigned there, he would spend most of his time working in naga library. When in the library, he would help us make and prepare the newsletter, brochure, and manual. While ff he was in the bookmobile; he’s a storyteller in our regular library sessions. His 2 years of volunteer work in the library help us find books and funds for the library hub. Fortunately, the us embassy club gave us a small fund to address those concerns. We don’t need shelves, aircons, and TV, what we need are bins, tables, and computers, because, they will not be used once the books are distributed.

Having a peace corps working in the library is an education itself. Aside from knowing their culture, the most important development was when my staff have developed the englog-taglish converstation. I never emagine that my staff are talking in english. The experience of my staff in conversing with Nick has made them at ease in dealing with other foreign visitors in the library. Aside from Nick, PCVs Will Stone and Dan Nover have had a share of moments with the naga library.

When thousand of books arrives and needs to be distributed before the June 2006, it was also his last month in naga library. Tasks of covering, classifying, bar-coding and accessioning that requires additional personnel to perform has became a problem in accomplishing the deadline.
This brought me to the next point ..... finding local volunteers. Students who are recipient of educational scholarship grants of lgu-naga helps us do the covering of books. In turn, we were able to accomplished the deadline.

Volunteers or the third sector of the society is one of the many features of Naga City multi-awarded brand of governance. Naga made every city resident involve in the affairs of the government. And, naga library benefits from governance. AND FOR PUBLIC LIBRARIANS who work alone in the library may have look at the possibility of finding volunteers. If i can do it naga library, i guess, you can do it in your library.

1 comment:

Nick Hake said...

Your comments jogged a few memories I have from the time I spent in the Philippines, along with reminding me of he importance of being a volunteer... "salamat".