Philippines: E-library seen to provide free books, educational materials


DAVAO CITY, Philippines — A three-storey electronic library that offers “rich multimedia content and is accessible to the public” is set to be established here.

Pedrita Badar, office in-charge of city library, said in an interview with Davao Today that the establishment of an e-library would benefit the public, especially the students who wanted to access books and educational materials for free.

“We are in a process [of establishing the e-library], but there are other department projects that should be prioritized so as of now we passed other proposals for the library,” Badar said Monday.

Badar’s statement came as the city is set to celebrate the 82nd National Book Week which will start from Nov 21 to 25, bearing the theme: “Today’s Readers: Inclusivity in Diversity.”

A national convention for city librarians slated on Tuesday, Nov. 22 at the SMX Convention Center at SM Lanang will also be conducted.

Jenelito Atillo, spokesperson of the Department of Education XI, lauded proposed e-library project as this would “enhance the reading skills of the children.”

“This will be a very good move. It is actually responding to the needs of the time since we are now more into technology,” he said.

Atillo said the e-library would limit the students’ access to what he termed as “garbage” materials from the internet.

“This program will be a great help filter those other unnecessary things in the world wide web. It would help limit the students gain access to the inappropriate websites,” he said.

The DepEd spokesperson said the aim of the city library would be a practical program for students to encourage them to read books more often.

“This effort of the city government will also help us in our goal to entice the students to read more books using the e-library,” he pointed out.

“This program is just a one way maybe to rekindle the children’s love for reading,” he said.

Based on the 2013 Functional Literacy, Education and Mass Media Survey, one in every ten, or about 4 million Filipino children and youth, belongs to the out-of-school youth.

The highest number of out-of-school children and youth across the regions was recorded in the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao which comprised 14.4 percent.

Meanwhile, six regions, including Davao, have proportion of out-of-school children and youth higher than the national figure at 10.6 percent. The other regions were SOCCSKSARGEN, Central Luzon, Zamboanga Peninsula, Caraga and MIMAROPA. (