QNL’s Children’s and Young Adult’s Library lends out 1mn books

The Children’s and Young Adult’s Library at Qatar National Library has lent out over 1mn books so far and is providing a space to pursue and expand children’s and young adults’ love of books, noted an official of the library.
“In 2021, we checked out our one millionth book to a member. This was a huge milestone for the Children’s and Young Adults’ Library and a testament to our commitment to providing open space and collections that allow children to explore their curiosity and fall in love with reading,” said, Maram al-Mahmoud, head of the Children’s and Young Adult’s Library.
“Children and young adults can discover new interests and talents at the Children’s and Young Adults’ Library. We house more than 120,000 print books in our collection, the majority of which are in English and Arabic. We also offer access to many electronic resources, including e-books, e-magazines, and other online resources specifically designed for children as well as educational toys, games, arts and crafts materials, and computers and iPads equipped with the latest learning programmes,” explained, al-Mahmoud.
The Young Adults’ Library includes more than 30,000 fiction and non-fiction books, graphic novels, and magazines. Young readers also have access to college preparatory resources and the opportunity to explore their creative side with video game consoles and musical instruments. It also includes school curricula and college preparation textbooks.
“We host numerous activities and events for children, young adults, and their families throughout the year such as Interactive Storytime, Creative Workshops, Early Literacy Programmes, Book Discussions, Science, Arts, literature, and theatre programmes amongst others. This aims to support them to discover new and unexpected areas of interest, share ideas, and widen their knowledge,” the official said.
Al-Mahmoud said that one of the projects the library embarked on recently was storytelling.
“Keeping the tradition of storytelling alive in the 21st century, the library, in collaboration with the Alexandria Library in Virginia, US, and Qatar Foundation, conducted virtual storytelling and art sessions in which members of the Arab American community in the US, had the opportunity to listen to ‘live’ stories about their cultural heritage. This was their chance to reconnect with their roots, understand the evolution of cultural heritage, the importance of its preservation, and the significance of the Arabic language itself,” said, al-Mahmoud.
Another initiative of the library is a project called the “Story Box” that included giving more than 500 books from the library to the Alexandria Library’s three branches in Virginia, US.
“These books aimed to allow children with Arab backgrounds to connect with their culture and traditions. The resources offer them the ability to improve their Arabic language skills and provide exposure to both Arab and Qatari cultures. While most of the books were in the Arabic language, there were some bilingual and English books as well. This variety helped us reach out to both Arabic and non-Arabic speakers of Arab origin,” highlighted the head of the library.
According to the official, the library played a critical role in helping students and young learners continue their education when schools closed during the pandemic.
“Children, young adults, and families were able to access ebooks, audiobooks, learning tools, and other educational resources from home. We have also seen a sharp increase in online resource usage with downloads jumping from 2,840,027 in 2019 to 3,091,566 in 2020. We held over 236 virtual educational programmes from March through December in 2020. The pandemic provided us with a great opportunity to re-imagine how we deliver our services and resources,” added al- Mahmoud.






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