In his remarks the Chief Librarian Sierra Leone Library Board, Sallieu Turay emphasized that books have contributed to lifelong learning and socio economic development of the country and that it is the single most important resource when talking about human capital development. He further disclosed that the books distributed are books donated to the Sierra Leone Library Board by Book Aid International (BAI) and urged beneficiaries to utilize the books for the right purpose.
Mr. Turay reiterated that the books were well selected covering various levels and disciplines as they have been working closely with schools and tertiary institutions; and the Inspiring Readers Project for Schools in the four regions to ensure that the 685,000 books fit the needs of the 46 institutions nationwide ranging from pre-primary, primary, JSS, SSS and tertiary institutions.
He expressed satisfaction for the presence of the Sierra Leone Correctional Service represented by a senior officer who was a former user of the headquarters library. He added that the main aim of partnering with them is to ensure that when inmates are out they will be able to fit into society. He commended the present strides by the Correctional Service to start offering courses for inmates and noted that it is in line with President Bio’s drive to make education paramount for national development.
Mr. Turay also disclosed that they are enjoying profound strategic partnership with Book Aid International and that recently, they they provided 50,000 books for the educational sector in Sierra Leone. He noted that despite the increase of technology, one cannot do away without books as they go side by side and expressed his hope that the donation will improve access to books.
In his remarks, the Deputy Chief Librarian, Musa Balla Mansaray commended the Chief Librarian for his hard work and initiative to make sure that Book Aid International is back in Sierra Leone and that the books sent are not only benefitting the Sierra Leone Library Board but other institutions in the country.
Mr. Mansaray said they hope that the donation will help build on the collection of books in schools, colleges, and universities as they believe that books are steps one climbs for the progress of the human being. He further expressed his hope that the books as educational resources would be of great help to learners and readers and assured them that the books distributed meet the needs of every category of student.
In her vote of thanks, a beneficiary from one of the Inspiring Readers Project School in Segbwema, Mrs. Hawa Conteh, commended Book Aid International for choosing their school for the project and for the books’ donation. She said that books are relevant for learning institutions and expressed her thanks and appreciation to the Chief Librarian and staff for making tremendous strides in bringing the Library Board up to speed.
She further commended the Chief Librarian for empowering provincial libraries all over the country which are now well equipped with recent books and thanked Book Aid International for coming to the aid of the government to provide such books.