Librarians Undergo Training

A four-day international training course for librarians across the country under the Public Library for Development initiative is underway in Winneba in the Central region.

The initiative which is created and managed by TechAide, a technology firm in collaboration with Ghana Library Authority (GLA), is funded by Electronic Information for Libraries (EIFL).

Participants of the training would be taken through Introduction into library service; community needs assessment, new service development as a library project, impact assessment for public libraries and internet resources and searching.

Three persons from beneficiary countries of the project were invited to share their experiences from different projects which include Ms Mary Kinyanjui, Coordinator of Kenya National Library Service, Mr Nyasha Sithole of Masiphumelele Public Library, South Africa and Ms Asia Kamukama of Maendeleo Foundation, Uganda.

According to Mr Kafui A. Prebbie, Chief Executive Officer of TechAide, the course was the second in a series of three to be organised this year, adding that it is the first to be piloted in Ghana under the EIFL-  Public Library Innovative Programme (PLIP).

He said the first training which was held in June this year offer participants training in advance ICT, presentation skills, and how to develop effective training programmes.

Mr Prebbie said the training was aimed at feeding participants with the knowledge on how to plan community-led service based on community needs, drafting a community needs assessment plan, developing and prioritising strategies for a new service development based on community needs and learn how to collect data based on community needs and drafting community assessment plan.

Ms Ugne Lipekaite, Impact Manager of EIFL-PLIP who led the session on public library service innovations, shared her experience of supporting the development of 39 innovative public library projects in Africa, Asia, Latin America and Europe from 2010-2013.

She said EIFL-PLIP helps connect communities in developing countries to information through public libraries.

Ms Lipekaite said this was done by enabling public libraries to use information communication technology to offer innovative information services focused on crucial community development needs such as agriculture, health, economic development, education, and supporting social inclusion and development of the marginalised and vulnerable communities.

She said EIFL-PLIP’s grant and capacity building support has sparked the creation of 49 new and innovative public library projects implemented by more than 300 public and community libraries in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America.

Ms Kinyanjui said the EIFL-PLIP’s supports the learning of school children in Kibera, Kenya, the biggest slum in Eastern Africa and replicated in three more communities in 2012.

Mr Guy Amartefio, GLA Library Connectivity Coordinator and Greater Accra Regional Librarian said the first training made significant improvement in the activities of the beneficiary libraries, which shows that Ghanaian Librarians could perform better if the needed support is there.

He expressed the hope that the second training would further strengthen the capacity and skills of the participants, which would be used to promote the libraries.


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