The National Library of the Republic of Maldives was founded in 1945
as the "State Library" of the Maldives by Ameer Mohamed Amin Didi, then
the head of the Department of Education. The Library was renamed "Majeedi
Library" in 1948 after one of the most popular statesmen of the Maldives,
Ameer Abdul Majeed Didi.
The National Library is headed by Director General and financed by the government and functions under the Ministry of Information, Arts and Culture. After the re-opening of the National Library, the library will provide Public Library Service cum National Library service. Public Library aims to provide information, recreation and support research as well as equal opportunity for the education and providing books for all. National Library aims to acquire and preserve publications concerning the country and maintain national literature.
In the age of globalization, the National Library of Maldives, as the largest and oldest library in the Maldives, is the center of library and information activities in Maldives. The National Library is the apex organization of the library and information services system and serves the entire nation. With the turning point of the new era, the National library has become the landmark for consultation whenever the need arise for additional knowledge and information. The library has played active roles in collecting reading materials, and promoting reading habit as well as the research work among Maldivians and non-Maldivians in the past twenty-two years.
Collection development is one of the most significant areas of librarianship. It is the backbone of all library services and important for the librarians to develop the collection in an organized manner.
The library has a fairly good number of Arabic and Urdu books beside Dhivehi (Maldivian Language) and English books. The English section contains more than 34,263 books, both Reference Fiction and Non-fiction. Dhivehi, Arabic and Urdu section contains almost 8,860, 1,662 and 947 respectively. In addition, library holds bound periodical volumes, reports, manuscripts, journals and other serials, newspapers and press cutting files, pamphlets. The books are categorized according to Dewey Decimal Classification 21st edition and catalogued according to AACR2 as well.
The library has rich collection in Philosophy & Psychology; Religion; Social Sciences; Language; natural science & Mathematics; Technology (Applied science); The Arts-Fine and Decorative arts; Literature & Rhetoric; Geography & History. The library collects foreign government and academic publications through donation and an exchange program with other libraries around the world. The library has collected and preserved many old Dhivehi literature and are allowed only for reference work. The bound newspapers are also collected. These are a good number of Dhivehi, Arabic, Urdu and Maldivian books. A special collection of books on all aspects of the Maldives is also maintained separately. The library has also good collection in fiction & non-fiction books of children.
National Collection: The National Library main objectives are to acquire
and preserve of all significant printed materials produced in the country
to maintain the national heritage. A special collection of books on all
aspects of the Maldives is also maintained separately. This could be used
in the library for reference purposes only.
The National Library remains open from 8.00 a.m. to 9.00 p.m. everyday
except Friday and public holidays. The library services hours are as:
The library has following procedure to enroll its members in the library as:
a) To become a member, fill application form available for MRF 1/- from the cash counter, and return it to the Library with the memberships fees, the Library fees, and two stamp size photographs. Foreign members must pay a refundable deposit of MRF 150/- (one hundred and fifty rufiya) in addition to the membership fee and the library fee.
b) Membership fee:
c) Library fee:
Membership is in three categories:
a) Junior members5) CLIENTS
The library users are the general public, children, students, teachers,
researchers and Government personnel. Foreigners could be members and also
they could visit library as readers. At paying a deposit of 150.
The library is providing the following kind of services to the library users:
a) Lending Services6.1) Internet Services
The Cyber Station has been installed in the library. The Library Cyber station is provided Internet services to the library members, only for educational purposes from 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Internet service could be used for 15 minutes per day free of charge. A fee of =/50 laari for a junior and =/75 laari for an adult member will be charged for each extra minutes.
6.2) Photocopy Services
The photocopy services at reasonable charges and this service is also heavily used specially by the students.
6.3) Services to Children
Public library has a legitimized duty to perform by providing adequate library service to the children of the locality. Special attention is paid to children for whom there is a separate section, under the charge of a person specially qualified to attend their needs. A reading room is provided for children between 5 to 16 years of age equipped with reference materials and books of general nature on various subjects. They can also take books for home reading. The section is providing to children to use the computer including Internet facilities from the Cyber Station. The Photocopy service and press cutting is also available to the children for their school purpose. Special project file made ready for the student in any time of the year when needed.
6.4) Lending Service
The main objectives of the National Library are provide to issue the books for home reading. Books are placed on open shelves and free accessible to the readers. The readers can borrow two books at one time for two weeks. There will be a fine of =/50 laari per book for each day, if the item is not returned within the loan period.
6.5) Reference and Information Services
Besides these essential books service, there are many more facilities that are offered to the public. There is a separate Reference Section in the library where periodicals, newspapers and the books for ready reference services are made available for consultation. Reference service is to assist the clientele to use resource of the library in an effective manner leading to their optimum utilization. Reference and information service is the most intensive kind of personal service, which attempts to bring together the user and information in a personal way.
6.6) Current Awareness Services
The library collects various articles and news items from Newspapers, Periodicals etc. mainly for the use of our readers and filed according to the subjects which is available at the magazine rack. The library also provides abstracts of important articles appearing in the newspapers and periodicals. This is part of the library's extension activities and it attempts to bring about an awareness of current affairs among our clients.
6.7) Reading Room Facility
A special provision has been made in National Library for public to read in the cool and conducive atmosphere of the library. This section is very much appreciated by the readers who sit there undisturbed, and study. The latest newspapers and magazines are available this section.7) ADEPLIS (Advanced Distance Education Programme in Library and Information Science)
The National Library of Maldives has started an Advance Distance Education
programme in Library and Information Science with the help of Sri Lanka
Library Association to train the library staff. The five employees have
been deputed for this course. This course is three level professional development
The objectives of the programme are:
a) Developing managerial and professional skills of the library personnel in Maldives so that they could design, operate and maintain library information system and services required by the country.The syllabus, duration and lessons of this course and evaluation of the participants are similar to national professional course of Sri Lanka Library Association (SLLA). The participants who complete the three level courses are awarded the professional certificate, which is internationally recognized. Professional librarians are required for designing, developing and operating information and library systems and for the improvement of the library profession in Maldives. The advantage of this programme is that the National Library will recruit a professional librarian as lecturer and consultant.
One of the important functions of the National Library is to bring the
publication of the National Bibliographies. In addition, the library is
responsible for the regular publication of a variety of other bibliography.
The National Library has published Maldives National Bibliography annually.
The National Library of Maldives is headed by a Director General. The
total number of staff is 38 out of which 9 are in administration and 29
in the professional staff. The National Library is under administrative
control of Ministry of Information Arts and Culture.
The National Library provides librarians around the country with training
and continuing education programme. In this way, the library staff is better
able to cope with both the changing external environment and demands of
the library's users to more comprehensive information and services. The
librarians are provided courses and instructions from other countries.
The National Library is actively involved in International Cooperation,
document exchange with overseas libraries and membership in international
exchange of library materials The National Library is presently a member
of Conference of Directors of National Library in Asia and Oceania (CDNLAO).
All Rights reserved. Copyright (c) National Library of Maldives 2003