KOCHI: Many children have been unable to visit libraries owing to the pandemic and its restrictions. To bring their reading on track, an online programme titled Pusthakaparichayam Parambara (familiarising books) has been flagged off by the authorities of the 77-year-old Tagore Library And Reading Room in Karuvelipady.
The programme, which started on Saturday, aims to introduce at least one book to the children hailing from West Kochi. The students should either have a membership at the library or must have associated with any of the earlier programmes hosted by the library.
“Pusthakaparichayam Parambara is now being attended by around 250 students of up to class 10. Retired or senior teachers who are from West Kochi will be introducing a book every Saturday through a short video. The teachers will highlight the value of the book and give a glimpse of the story. Later, the video will be circulated on social media platforms, including YouTube, children’s WhatsApp groups, and in group which consists of around 55 teachers,” said C S Joseph, secretary.
Books which have to be read by children during their school days are being shortlisted by the authorities. Currently, 25 books have been kept aside. The first book to be featured last Saturday was “Gramabalika” by Lalithambika Antharjanam. “The coming Saturday will see Arivinte Jalakam by S Rameshan, and the next in line is Vaazhthapetta Poocha by the award-winning author Gracy,” adds Joseph.
The featured books will be kept in a separate rack in the library. With the help of the Library Council, the library will be able to provide the featured books at a discounted rate for those who wish to buy them. According to Joseph, children who are not associated with the library can also join the weekly programme. “We have been getting requests from outsiders to add them in the WhatsApp groups,” he said.
“The idea for the programme was born during the event “Vayanapakshacharanam” conducted from June 19 to July 7. During this event, many students participated in poetry and storytelling programmes.
We decided to continue organising such events to help the children, and we came up with the idea of initiating this weekly programme,” said C S Joseph. The library has 464 members as children, out of
which only less than 100 are active participants. To attract more youngsters and to instil the love for books within them, the Tagore Library authorities initiated several competitions and programmes.
“At present, we are conducting a scientific experimentation programme on our YouTube channel, Tagore Library Kochi. Dinesh Kumar Thekkumbadu, a high school teacher, showcases 100 different scientific experiments on the channel,” said Joseph.
To be a part of the ‘Pusthakaparichayam Parambara’, contact: +91 98463 23663