Nakuru Library embracing technology to cultivate reading culture among students

With the holidays here, Kenya National Library Service Nakuru branch is bee hive of activities as pupils and students make use of the opportunity offered by the facility owing to the fact that tuition was banned.

A spot check at the facility showed that it was full to the brim with some pupils and students being forced to sit on the floor as they go on with their revision at the facility.

According t the facility Manager Mrs. Purity Kavuri Mutuku, the 5 storey facility is now hosting over 700 pupils/students.She adds that at the moment the facility has a membership of 11,700 who visit the facility to access various services.

“The 5 storey facility is now hosting over 700 pupils/students. The facility has a membership of 11,700 who visit the facility to access various services” she said.

With the library collection having 62,000 Print materials covering all the subjects, Mrs.Mutuku believes this is the only place that the pupils and students as well as adults who want to quench their thirst for knowledge can visit and be satisfied.

As one way of cultivating reading attitude among individuals, the library has embraced technology through the introduction of Audio books, Video Books-readers Books, Electronic resources, internet access including powerful Wi-Fi as well as Braille materials.

She says, the introduction of such is in line with the facility’s mission of enabling access to information and Knowledge for transformation of livelihood.

“There is need for innovation through nurturing a reading culture that will transform the society” says Mrs.Mutuku.

Besides that, the facility has also continued to involve in outreaches such as book clubs in 12 schools so far within Nakuru County.

Collaboration with Nakuru Youth Bunge has also seen Tusome initiative take place in over 26 schools from different zones of Nakuru County.

Book Talks and cultural exhibitions are also included in the services just to ensure the attitude of reading among people.

Collaboration with the American embassy has also seen the facility empower women and youth through various programs.

“We have partnered with American embassy to see to it that women and youths are empowered. Women groups have been able to come up with projects such as beads making etc…” she said.

These, Mrs.Mutuku admits has seen transformation in the society as there is improved performance in schools which has seen many partners coming out to work with the facility in society transformation agenda.

However, the facility still faces challenges among them lack of enough furniture especially during holidays when many students make use of the facility.

“We have over 700 seats but still not enough especially during holidays when the facility is busy” she said.

On security, she narrates a situation early 2017 when teenagers would come to the facility and then leave to loiter in town…but then make their way back to the facility in the evening to be picked by the parents.

This according to her caused a lot of issues as some parents were bitter with the behavior demanding an action.This saw the management come up with stern rule that all students come in by 8 in the morning and only leave at 12 noon.

“After the incident and parents were bitter we came up with rule that no student is allowed to leave the facility before 12 noon unless there is a communication from the parent to the facility” says Mrs.Mutuku.

According to her, learning is a process and if students can make good use of the Library facilities then the reading culture can be activated in the society for transformation agenda.

PHOTO/Pristone Mambili:Pupils using technology during a reading session at Kenya National Library service Nakuru Branch.