The National Library of the Philippines (NLP) turned over books and computers to 44 affiliated Barangay Reading Centers (BRCs) of the city government at the Calapan City Pavilion on Thursday.
Rowena Mallari, barangay chairperson of Lumangbayan, said she was happy and grateful to be one of the recipients of the library resources.
She said that while many people are hooked on technology including social media, there are still those who are “hungry for books”.
“With the BRCs, whatever one’s status, there is equal access to the resources,” Mallari said.
“Education is the great equalizer in society. With the modern times come the innovation of libraries including BRCs, because members of the community start here,” said lawyer Reymund Al Ussam, city administrator, during the event.
“Libraries play a role in promoting education, literacy, and community development. As libraries continue to adapt and evolve in the digital age, they remain a vital resource for people from all walks of life, providing access to information, fostering lifelong learning and supporting personal growth,” he added.
City Librarian Claire Benter, in an interview, said there are currently 51 barangay reading centers here but only 44 have book allocation because the others are still newly affiliated.
“There are 62 villages in the city. The other villages do not have BRCs yet because of incomplete affiliation requirements with the NLP like limited space,” she added.
Proclamation No. 563 series of 1959 declared March 9 as Public Library Day. Now on its 64th year, the observance is themed “Investing in Public Libraries is Investing in People Lives.”
Republic Act 7743, promulgated on June 17, 1994, provides for the establishment of congressional, city, and municipal libraries and BRCs throughout the Philippines. (PNA)