Via The Hindu
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Till this summer, Devayani, a Std. VIII student of St. Methodist School, in Koppu village near Kuzhumani, and Kausalya and Periasamy, both Std. VII students of Government Higher Secondary School at the nearby Ayilapettai village, were not aware of the presence of a branch library in Koppu.
But now, as newly enrolled members, they, as many others in the cluster of villages, are regular visitors to the library. They access books in the newly created children's section.
While Devayani is interested in looking up moral stories, Kausalya's option is for books on general knowledge and Periasamy prefers books on facts and achievements of various countries. “For the first time we are spending summer holidays in a useful way. Reading books has given us lot of confidence. We will share our experiences with our other friends and request them to become members of libraries,” all the three say in unison.The village library in Pappakurichi on the outskirts of Tiruchi, is another library which teams with school students. It was the recent campaign of the State Department of Public Libraries, which attracted them towards the libraries. A record number of over 25,000 students of various schools across Tiruchi district got a golden opportunity to have access to government libraries, thanks to students' enrolment campaign of the department.
The campaign was held during September 2009 to March 2010 under the aegis of the “Our World Library” (Namathu Ulagam Noolagam) scheme of the department.The initiatives taken by the department paid rich dividends, as students of not only city schools, but also rural schools enrolled themselves as members of the 126 libraries in the district.
It was the very reasonable registration fee of Rs. 20 for rural students and Rs. 30 for city students, which attracted a large number of students to the libraries, says A.P. Sivakumar, District Library Officer. What has given satisfaction to the department officials is that about 75 per cent of the enrolled students turn up at the libraries during summer holidays.
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