Myanmar Library Aid Foundation

Why our name change? We have partnered with Myanmar Book Aid and Preservation Foundation [MBAPF] for six years; during that period we  shipped 900,000 books and assisted over 900 libraries. Last year our success was recognized by several global-support library organizations now supporting MBAPF.  Beyond Access is the umbrella organization that facilitates a half-dozen large donors including USAID, Asia Foundation and International Federation of Library Association in pursuing a national strategy of library improvements.

This past year NLR focused on assisting one library sponsored by Myanmar Engineering Society, because they accepted the fabulous collection donated by Foundation for the Future in nearby Bellevue, Washington.  We aimed to use that collection as foundation for a futures program that could serve the country’s  public and private sectors and support a regional ASEAN effort. However the effort proved to be premature and we have postponed it for another year.

Meanwhile, our Dr. Thant Thaw Kaung and MFAPF accepted responsibility to assist 55 libraries in the Mandalay region expand internet capacity by acquiring laptop computers and training librarians in their use. He has invited us to partner with MBAPF in this Beyond Access project, which we discussed and agreed to do at our annual directors meeting on September 2.

We also agreed to continue sending used books donated by Thrift Books as well as quality collections from individuals and organizations. Extraordinary subject donations in music, architecture, social sciences and humanities,  and health fields continue to complement the massive contributions by Thrift Books.

This coming year we will continue to seek funding to ship books, to assist MBAPF in meeting their commitment to four dozen local libraries, to support librarian training programs and to purchase computers suitable to their needs.

In subsequent posts I will elaborate on our revitalized and expanded objectives.

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