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National Diet Library Newsletter

No. 206, June 2016

Training sessions and presentations with the Chief Librarian of
the National Library and a Ministry official from Nepal

Since 1989, the National Diet Library (NDL) has served as the International Federation of Library Associations Strategic Programme on Preservation and Conservation (IFLA PAC) Regional Centre for Asia, and has worked to promote cooperation in preserving library materials throughout Asia. As part of the cooperative activities of the Regional Centre, Mr. Yadab Chandra Niraula, Chief Librarian of the Nepal National Library (NNL), and Mr. Yam Bahadur Bashyal, Section Officer, Ministry of Education, Nepal, were invited to the NDL to receive training and give a presentation on the post-earthquake situation in Nepal.

Training sessions

Mr. Niraula and Mr. Bashyal arrived in Japan on February 15th, 2016, and received training for four days on the basics of preservation and conservation of library materials, with particular emphasis on disaster-preparedness. They also visited a few public and school libraries in the Tokyo area. They were greatly interested in learning about the current situation in school libraries in Japan, how to handle water- or mold-damaged materials, and the latest library facilities and equipment available for the new library they will build. They commented that they had renewed recognition of the importance of a continuous approach to preservation and the need for a well-organized system for building and utilizing school libraries, and for fostering human resources.

<<Lecture on book repair>>

Reporting meeting

Presentations were made on the afternoon of February 17th. Mr. Niraula presented an overview of libraries in Nepal and then explained the post-earthquake situation at the NNL. The main building at the NNL, for example, has been abandoned due to the danger of collapse. Library materials were evacuated to a nearby school in plastic bags. Luckily, the monsoon season did not start until the day after the evacuation was complete, so damage from heavy rainfall was avoided. The schoolrooms, however, are too small to provide library service, and so the government has promised to provide a budget for reconstruction of the library building. The NNL management is now looking for a new building site. Mr. Bashyal gave an overview of the Nepalese school system and school libraries. School libraries in Nepal are generally in poor condition, but the Nepal government is planning to improve school libraries and is committed to a "one school, one library" program. During a question and answer session, the participants discussed how lessons learned from the earthquake could be implemented in the reconstruction of libraries and other city planning matters.


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