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National Library and ZODML work together to create an environmentally friendly learning environment for children

The National Library of Nigeria (NLN) in promoting environmental literacy and sustainable practices that transform the traditional library experience is partnering with the Zaccheus Onumba Dibiaezue Memorial Libraries (ZODML), a non-profit organization to establish The Green Library.

Obianuju Onuorah, the Zonal Director of the National Library of Nigeria, who spoke on the partnership, expressed delight at the timely intervention of the ZODML as the country’s apex repository had earlier finalized plans to set up a children’s library in all its 52 branches in Nigeria.

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“It is a dream come true for NLN as recently, Chinwe Anunobi, National Librarian/Chief Executive Officer at NLN, had previously led the establishment of children’s reading space in all National Library centers in Nigeria,” she said.

“The Green Library is a reading place just a little bit different, it is mainly for children from four to 17 years old and there are many activities planned for them. They will read, play and relax. The children will also be taught about preserving the environment, which means being eco-friendly,” she added.

Obiorah applauded ZODML for coming up with the concept that matched what NLN had on the ground to catch the children young.

“We have a number of programs to help children cultivate reading habits. The unique eco-friendly environment will help the children excel academically and even socially as it comes with a green ecosystem that allows them to read and play,” she noted.

Ifeoma Esiri, the Coordinator of ZODML, said the idea of ​​the green library is a passion to educate people on the value of the library, especially for children.

“People need to wake up. There is no reading culture in Nigeria simply because there are no libraries and we don’t have people advocating for the establishment of libraries,” she said.

Moreover, she said; “The Green Library is a place for hands-on learning and discovery, where children and young adults are inspired to become active conservationists of the future.”

The library is a pioneer of “green” practices that integrate renewable energy, recycled materials and energy conservation measures into its operations and serves as a model for future environmentally friendly libraries.

Some other benefits of the green library are that children have a space where they can do their homework, especially those in middle school three (JSS3) and high school (SSS).

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Obiorah explained that unlike the traditional library where people just come to read, students can borrow books and come back after reading.

She said her concern is that the place would be overcrowded during holidays as the children would want what is on site for their education.

Esiri pointed out that the additional benefits lie in exposing the children to environmental conservation and stewardship of nature. Moreover, she revealed that the library has a computer unit where students can use the internet to explore the learning process.

She called on sponsors and donors to support the move to provide Nigerian children with adequate access to education and help build their future.

The National Library was established by the federal government as the country’s primary information repository. It was established in 1960 with the enactment of the National Library Act of 1964.

Unlike public libraries, the national library rarely allows citizens to borrow books. They often contain numerous rare, valuable or important works.

ZODML is a non-profit organization founded in 1999 to celebrate the legacy of Zaccheus Onumba Dibiaezue, who flourished through self-education and career thanks to the help of the community library available to him.

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Born in 1914 to Igbo farmers in Ifitedunu, Anambra State, Nigeria, Zacchaeus was the fourth of eight children.

Zacchaeus showed signs of academic excellence from an early age with a thirst for knowledge and education, cutting fruit after school to buy oil for the lamp with which he studied at night.