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The number of IIDCYA rural mobile libraries has increased from 85 to 170 in less than four years.
The number of IIDCYA rural mobile libraries has increased from 85 to 170 in less than four years.

Increase in IIDCYA Mobile Libraries for Rural Folks

Equal opportunities must be made available in rural areas that constitute one third of the country so as to achieve a balance in cultural and social justice

Increase in IIDCYA Mobile Libraries for Rural Folks

The Institute for the Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults launched 31 mobile libraries for rural areas early this week each of which will cover 20 villages.
A ceremony to mark the event was held on Sunday in the institute’s conference hall and was attended by Alireza Hajianzadeh, IIDCYA’s director, and Mohammad Reza Vaez Mahdavi, deputy for educational and cultural affairs at Iran’s Management and Planning Organization.
According to Hajianzadeh, the number of IIDCYA rural mobile libraries has increased from 85 to 170 in less than four years.
“The figure is expected to reach 500 in the 10-year Vision Plan in which case 10,000 villages will benefit,” he said, the Persian daily Jahan-e San’at reported.
He proposed the formation of an association of benefactors for children and young adults’ cultural affairs at the institute to raise funds besides government funding for the libraries.
“Equal opportunities must be made available in rural areas that constitute one third of the country so as to achieve a balance in cultural and social justice. We need to create the conditions for rural folks for taking important posts and senior management positions,” said the official.
“Promoting reading is among the main functions of IIDCYA to lay the groundwork for and help build and intellectual society.”
He highlighted the role of the institute’s educators adding that they strive to  foster the culture of reading among the youth in 1,012 libraries across the country.
Establishing libraries in the deprived regions, fringes of metropolises and nomadic settlements is also on IIDCYA’s agenda.
“Social and cultural harm is among the major issues in deprived areas and  cultural and social security is attainable through the culture of reading,” he said.
Mahdavi, the MPO deputy, called on the IIDCYA to present a five-year plan for the expansion of the mobile library fleet in rural as well as urban and fringe areas.
“We guarantee to provide the required assistance in this regard,” he said.  
The official pointed to the role of intellectual development among the younger generation as a means to promote cultural values.
“We cannot only pin hopes on the present generation and must plan for the future generation as well,” he said.
Mahdavi stressed the need for developing infrastructure in villages to help curb  rural  immigration that has been rising over the past few decades largely due to difficult economic conditions and draught.
IIDCYA is planning to organize other cultural activities such as film and puppet theater shows, storytelling and handicraft events in villages.
The institute currently has only one rural puppet show wagon and intends to purchase five more if funds are allocated.
Besides IIDCYA, Mohammad Saffari Mehrban, a cultural activist has also come up with the idea of a mobile library. He drives a minibus-cum-library to 19 underprivileged villages around Tabas in South Khorasan Province every summer after receiving a bachelor’s degree in education nine years ago. His goal is to encourage young people to read.
His library has 1,470 members and 7,000 books. Every time he visits a village, he arranges a gathering with children in the local mosque, there they sing songs and draw, and sometimes he tells them stories.

 

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