To provide resources and services in a variety of media to meet the needs of individuals and groups for education, information and personal development including recreation and leisure.
Two individuals from South Sikkim namely Ima Rai, proprietor For word Library Namchi and Chitish Chettri, proprietor Chisopani Library have taken this initiative in their own to create a space for tranquil where one can read to their heart’s content.
Ima has established his library with intent to encourage people into reading, be it for studying purposes or for pleasure. The motive behind his initiative is to give the youth a platform where they can gather and bond.
The For-word library at Namchi was established in the year 2019 and holds books from literature, fiction, non-fiction and children books. Speaking with Sikkim Chronicle Ima Rai, For Word Library said “With two years since the establishment of the library the response from the public has been splendid, the membership fee for students have been reduced to encourage further reading.”
Imam’s objective for opening the library is to bring the reading culture back and also to resort to ones orthodox ways of understanding.
“ I wanted to do something for the people, I am a literature lover myself and one day while I was ideally sitting at my office this Idea of making one space where people from different fields of life can come and connect themselves came in my mind and hence I ended up with For Word library”
“ This is a space for everyone Travellers, Students, Scholars the doors for the library is open to everyone” He added
Speaking on his interest in books, Rai said, “I was always a technophobe and books was always my companion and reading books gives me pleasure”
Apart from being a space for reading, the forward library of Namchi also organizes gigs and shows in collaboration with NGOs through which they generate donations which is used for a social cause
Likewise, Chitish Chettri resident of Chisopani village, South Sikkim also devoted his time towards this initiative of establishing a public library at his home.
“Ever since I was a child I had this dream of opening a public library in my Borg because i had a knack for reading but couldn’t avail any books back in the days due to lack of services available.” Chettri said
Traditional reading habits have now changed along with the 21st century and easy availability of information via digital media. People are now looking for an opportunity to read contents in electric mode. The younger generation prefers reading through the internet following up book reviews rather than resorting to books.
A hobby of book collection and interest in reading drove Chitish to work harder towards his goal of bringing back the reading culture once again.
“Due to the shortage of books when I was growing up, I wanted to open this library so that the coming generation doesn’t have to go through these similar circumstances. So, with the money I saved for getting myself a proper camera for reporting; I decided to use it instead for building this library for the greater good and also to make my childhood dream come true.” said Chettri
Chettri also stated that the library is open for readers and also for people interested in donating books.
The Chisopani village library is yet to be inaugurated due to the pandemic and many restrictions like subsequent lockdowns, which had an adverse impact on public spaces.
The drive for connecting people to information and creating a safe haven for kids when school is not in session pushed these individuals into establishing the public libraries.
Reading habits fires up your imagination and fosters concentration; it increases your vocabulary and comprehension, improves brain connectivity, empowers you to empathize with other people and reduces stress.
KALZANG UZOR GURUNG