During a virtual workshop on the experience of reading in public libraries, held during National Reading Month
- Discussing the role of public libraries in promoting reading and making it a daily lifestyle.
- Presenting rich platforms to discover, nurture and hone literary and artistic talents.
- Emphasising the keenness of Dubai Public Libraries’ team to prepare rich cultural and knowledge content for the public.
Dubai, UAE: Dubai Culture and Arts Authority (Dubai Culture) participated in a virtual workshop organised by Abu Dhabi Public Libraries on 15 March that highlighted the role of public libraries in promoting reading and consolidating a culture of learning and research. The Authority emphasised the extensive, rich content in Dubai’s public libraries and the activities that contribute to encouraging reading among society, revealing literary and artistic talents, nurturing them, and providing a platform to introduce writers from among citizens and residents.
During the workshop, Eiman Al Hammadi, Acting Manager of the Libraries Affairs Section at Dubai Culture, discussed the Authority’s strategic roadmap, which aims to support talents in the emirate and enable the participation of society members to create an economic system that would stimulate the creative economy, placing Dubai on the global cultural map and preserving its tangible and intangible cultural heritage, thus achieving the Authority’s vision of strengthening Dubai’s position as a global centre for culture, an incubator for creativity, and a thriving hub for talent.
Al Hammadi referred to the rich cultural and knowledgeable content that the Dubai Public Libraries’ team works to provide to the public, providing an overview of the social media content on the @dubaipubliclibraries Instagram account, which contributes to enriching the knowledge of community members through short summaries of the books in those libraries; famous quotes from the most prominent authors and thinkers; the ‘Know the Author’ section, which sheds light on Emirati and Arab writers and their literary works; interactive posts that seek to spread knowledge about global public libraries; and through children story readings that highlight Emirati and Arab writers.
Al Hammadi also introduced attendees to the branches of Dubai Public Libraries, which include Al Ras, Al Mankhool, Al Tawar, Umm Suqeim, Al Safa Art and Design Library, Hor Al Anz, Al Rashidiya, and Hatta. She focused on the Al Safa Art and Design Library, which specialises in architecture, design and art.
She also highlighted the School of Life initiative launched in January 2021 at the Hatta Public Library by Her Highness Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairperson of Dubai Culture, to support the cultural and creative community in this region as well as provide opportunities for entrepreneurs to develop their ideas and creativity. This initiative aims to transform the main public libraries in Dubai into integrated cultural centres.
In addition, Al Hammadi provided an overview of the programmes and events hosted by Dubai Public Libraries to disperse cultural awareness in the Emirati community, discovering, motivating and refining talents through initiatives, such as The Reading Box, which was launched by Dubai Culture in 2016 to help transform reading into a way of life for all society members, especially the younger generations, and the Creative Writing initiative that was launched in 2019 to encourage and develop written talents.
Al Hammadi also highlighted the summer, winter and spring camps organised by the libraries in cooperation with specialists and highly qualified people. These camps provide training courses for school students and fun and useful activities, such as storytelling, various artistic workshops, and interactive competitions, among others. She also highlighted the libraries’ experience in participating in the Sharjah and Abu Dhabi book fairs for what they present in events, workshops, and signing ceremonies for new publications.