Mzansi Libraries On-Line (MLO) is a programme of the National Library of South Africa, in collaboration with the Department of Arts and Culture and the provincial library services in all 9 provinces.
It is part of the Global Libraries Programme which has been in existence for the last 20 years and has been implemented in approximately 30 developing countries in the world.
The Global Libraries Programme is based on the reality that libraries have the potential to serve and engage the entire community through targeted outreach programmes aimed at improving the lives of information-deprived communities who currently lack adequate access to information needed to live healthy and productive lives.
One of the key requirements for the successful implementation of the programme is;
•A shared vision for the country’s public library system that reflects the needs and priorities of the communities.
Provinces and municipalities by virtue of their respective mandates are well positioned to support, facilitate and ensure successful implementation of the programme.
This will in turn ensure that the intended beneficiaries, namely the information deprived communities fully participate in the opportunities and services being provided by the government.
•The above can be achieved through providing and enabling a conducive environment that will allow the public libraries to play their role as community development centers.
The overall objective of MLO is to empower South African communities to improve their lives through the provision of free access to information to achieve the following outcomes:
•Increased access to ICT particularly by children, youth, the unemployed, women, the elderly, people living with disabilities, especially the visually impaired.
•Through digital inclusion, library users know how to use technology to meet their needs.
•Increased social and economic benefits through access to health, education and economic information.
•For economic development, library users access information and apply for job opportunities
•E-governance: library users access information on government services.
•Culture and leisure: library users can access information on community or municipal activities.
•For educational needs, library users can participate in informal learning programmes and opportunities.
•For improved health, library users can access and find health information that suits their needs.
•Enhanced skills and capacity among the library staff for a better service delivery to their communities.
•Skilled and visionary library workers and leaders equipped to meet user needs and position libraries as critical community assets.
•A sustainable public library sector that will continue to meet the needs of the community into the future.
•Sustainability ensured through impact, advocacy and policy for continued ability of libraries to meet community needs.
@mzansilibs #mzansilibsLast published 28 November 2018