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Apr 23, 2010

Public Libraries Singapore - "Spot A Reader" "Friends of the Library"

Public Libraries Singapore "Spot A Reader" group photo at Bishan MRT Station.

I had an "unusual adventure" with other "Friends of the Library" group today from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm on a round trip from the newly opened Circle Line at Bishan MRT Interchange Station and back.

Many must be wondering who were worn with NLB and "Friends of the Library" logo shirts and a designated identity passcards in the train?

Please read on with photos to find out more.

We are "Friends of the Library" (FOL), similar to "Special Interest Groups" (SIG) of "Friends of the Museum", "Friends of the Zoo", "Friends of the Bird Park" and other SIG in Singapore. In a way, we are the "Evangelists of the Library" to encourage everyone to "READ! Singapore" and join the National Library.

The "Spot A Reader On The MRT" is initiated by Mrs Kiang-Koh Lai Lin, Director, Reading Initiative, Public Library Services, National Library Board and her project team in conjunction with "World Book Day 2010" - "世界书香日在狮城: 书香处处".

Obviously, our FOL participants wouldn't do something which an ordinary commuter were not allowed to do on the train. (NOTE: Please do not go around the MRT, or any other public places for that matter, with the "Spot A Reader" as an individual or any other groups on your own at anytime, anyday indiscriminately without the approval of the respective authorities).

With the consent from Public Libraries Singapore, special permission was given by the consent of SMRT for the purpose of this "Spot A Reader On The MRT" today only for 2 groups from 11:00 am and another from 1:00 pm time slots within the limited train routes. The SMRT Guides chaperoned the participants and to comply with instructions. The MRT train is a security and safety public areas not allowed for loitering or hawking business purposes. The participants were avoided to cause commuters inconvenience or privacy.

We were ensured not to speak too loudly to the commuters, seek their permission and with courtesy, considerate and public decorum. We were required not to disturb the commuters on their train ride, while commuters taking a nap on long journey (as seen some babies in arms). Not to cause unnecessary annoyance when commuters are left alone.

Please go on to view the photos:

"Spot A Reader" participants assembled at the Bishan MRT Station.

Briefing by SMRT Guides and staff of the National Library.

"Off we go..."

Entrance into the MRT Station with special pass access.

First "Spot A Reader" who obliged with an appreciative pose.

A curious gentleman with enquiry about National Library membership.

Another "Spot A Reader" delighted with a copy of the "Read! Singapore" booklet with compliments from National Library.

Young library member and his friends, surprised when presented them with free souvenir keychains.

The SMRT Guides, staff of NLB and our "Friends of the Library" volunteers with a group photo at the Bishan MRT Station. "Mission Accomplished!"

Please note that this is a personal blog to share my "Friends Of the Library" experience and an opportunity to create awareness of the "Spot A Reader for World Book Day 2010" project and other activities of Public Libraries Singapore.

DISCLAIMER: This personal blog contents are not written to represent the official comments of the Public Libraries Singapore, SMRT and other authorised organisations concerned.

Any inaccuracy of information remains the responsibility of the blog owner and to correct the blog as and when required.



Blogger PChew said...

A job well done, James. I envy you being a thorn among the roses. No offence, lah!

April 24, 2010 at 11:01 PM  
Blogger Thimbuktu said...

Thanks Philip.

Someone once said, "You can either complain that rose bushes have thorns, or rejoice that thorn bushes have roses, to penetrate this armor and connect with the inner beauty". No worries ; )

April 25, 2010 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger Ivan Chew said...

Nice post, James. Couldn't be there and appreciate your updates and insights to this particular initiative. When my colleagues and I were planning this event with Mrs Kiang-Koh Lai Lin, we weren't sure if people would appreciate being stopped and spotted. But figured out if certain precautions/ considerations were taken into account (as you've described very well) then it might worked. Reading your post, I think it's worked. You think this could be a regular event by the library?

April 25, 2010 at 10:09 AM  
Blogger Thimbuktu said...

Thanks for your kind comments, Ivan. The "Spot A Reader on the MRT" was not over-publicised on an island-wide basic and confined only the Circle Lines MRT trains on 2 time-slots at 11 am and 1 pm as in conjunction with the World Book Day on April 23. There was no untoward events or to cause any inconvenience to the co-operative commuters involved. I understand that over 5000 ppl participate for the the World Book Day awareness in this one-day event.

This is an occasional personal blog to share experience of "Friends of the Library", not a regular event by the library. I appreciate your invite to the previous Games Preview at Jurong Regional Library with Uncle Dicko. My pleasure to share on this blog as and when the library events to write about my personal learning experience. Cheers!

April 25, 2010 at 1:37 PM  

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