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Opinions of Saturday, 16 August 2014

Columnist: Blege, Alex

What is a library to a community?

…”Stroke of my pen” : what is a library to a community?

What is a library? It is a building or room containing collections of books, periodicals, and sometimes films and recorded music for use or borrowing by the public or the members of an institution.

Why then is there the need to have a library in a community? Libraries exist to meet two most important needs in a community. These are educational and equality.

The educational benefit comes in as a result of the provision of materials that give enlightenment to members of a society about how to live their lives purposefully. It also offers the opportunity of acquiring ideas that leads to the development of the individual and his or her community.
Furthermore, the educational benefit offers the opportunity to understand the rudiments and the discipline of research and personal studies. All these help to train the individual in the following skills; creative, critical, persuasive, and identification of problem and problem solving.
There is an axiom, “life is unequal because prices and incomes are unequal.” On this note, a library allows easy access to those who cannot afford books that contain the pieces of information that will bring changes into their lives and those of their ilk.

The existence of the library creates that equality in the acquisition of knowledge which will hither to not have been achievable in the absence of a library. It affords the poor child the same opportunities academically as the privileged child.

A few days ago, Ghana joined the world to celebrate International Youth Day. The theme that was chosen for this celebration by the United Nations was, “Youth and Mental Health” with the slogan, “Mental Health Matters”.
The existence of a library which has been with books and computers is one of the ways young people can be kept from the things that cause mental health issues that confront them.
A community library can also have a department which takes care of youth counseling to ensure that young people can find solutions to the problems that confront them.
Ghana’s own theme for the International Youth Day was, “Investing in Young People: The Key to Ghana’s Transformation and Economic Development".
A community library offers the best opportunity where the youth of a community can acquire knowledge which will turn into life changing ideas that can transform young people and their communities. It is also a way of decentralising the investment in the youth from the national level to the community based level.
Government must provide this opportunity where young people will explore their imaginative abilities as they learn to change their lives and that of their communities on their own.
This article is one of many articles that is to begin looking into the collapse of the Teshie Nungua Estates Library…………………. Stay tuned.