Downtown

One man's efforts take K.K. Nagar library far

The library gets 200 readers a days just for the newspaper section and lends out 400 books. Photo: K.V. Srinivasan   | Photo Credit: K_V_Srinivasan

For 32-years, this district library in K.K. Nagar was functioning as a part time facility, open only for few hours in the morning and evening. It drew a decent number of people from the locality, but had nothing very special to offer the readers. Things have changed for the better, with the library having been upgraded now to a full-time reading hub, open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. This sudden change in status can be credited to the dedication of its chief librarian Annadurai, who was transferred to this library two years ago.

With him came increasing number of memberships, more subscription to papers and magazines and fame for this commonplace facility. “In the last two years, membership has more than doubled, racing 2000, which included people not just from the neighbourhood, but also from other places such as West Mambalam, Vadapalani and Virugambakkam. Some of these places have a library, but readers prefer coming here for the large number of books we offer and the spacious facility to sit and read,” Annadurai says proudly.

The library gets 200 readers every day just for the newspaper section and lends out 300 books for adults and 150 for children.

“We buy 15 Tamil newspapers and eight English papers and subscribe to numerous magazines. The library has a collection of 65,000 books, both in English and in Tamil,” says the librarian, who believes the library’s extensive stock of books and papers is the reason for its growing popularity.

The membership fee is Rs. 60 and three books can be borrowed for two weeks time.

What is more unique about the library is its attempt to nurture in young children the habit of reading. Led by Annadurai, workshops for corporation teachers are held under the banner of the library. Here teachers are taught how to inculcate in children the habit of reading. Some tips to help children do well in examinations are also provided by resource persons. Tying up with Sowbhagya Caterers, the library offers free food to 150 poor students regularly. To help relieve exam stress, a psychiatrist was roped in to speak to X and XII standard students of MGR Nagar Corporation Higher Secondary School ahead of board examination. “The library also conducts regular debate, poetry and public speaking competitions for corporation school children to encourage them to read more. Through support from some of our members, the library also sponsors education of deserving needy children,” adds Annadurai.

The library next plans to honour X and XII students from Corporation schools who did well in boards this year. “We have sent letters to schools and have received replies from 15. We are waiting for more schools to send in the names of students and a function to honour them will be held in the month end,” says Annadurai.


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Printable version | Aug 3, 2021 8:38:49 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/downtown/one-mans-efforts-take-kk-nagar-library-far/article6180260.ece

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