“City of Reading” Activity Series kicks off to foster an ambience of citywide reading
Cultural Affairs Bureau
2023-04-13 20:33
  • “City of Reading” Activity Series kicks off to foster an ambience of citywide reading

  • “City of Reading” Activity Series kicks off to foster an ambience of citywide reading

  • “City of Reading” Activity Series kicks off to foster an ambience of citywide reading

  • Group photo of the guests

  • the enquiry robot “Lib”

  • library inventory robot

  • My Library

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In order to continuously promote the concept of “enriching life through reading” and with the aim of building Macao into a “City of Reading”, the Cultural Affairs Bureau (IC, from its Portuguese acronym) has been making great efforts to optimise the software and hardware facilities in public libraries, extending reading activities to more people in the community by launching the “Young Children Reading Programme”, organising promotional activities including the “Macao Library Week 2023” and “Reading in the City”, and has joined hands with the Education and Youth Development Bureau (DSEDJ) to launch a reading incentive programme to foster reading habits among children and teenagers and promote family reading. Through the series of measures dedicated to encouraging reading, IC hopes to further cultivate the reading ambience across the city.

Community activities to be held during the “Macao Library Week 2023” to infuse reading into daily life

The “Macao Library Week 2023”, jointly organised by IC, DSEDJ, the University of Macau Library, and Macao Library and Information Management Association, will be held on a larger scale this year with a range of activities promoting reading to be rolled out from 15 April to 14 May, including the well-received “Book Exchange” and “Periodicals Sale”; the Pop-up Library which provides the public with books to read free-of-charge; the interactive and fun-packed “Reading on the Go” that combines literature with music, body movements and storytelling; and the special offer “I have coffee, do you have a book?” in collaboration with cafés. Through such a rich variety of activities, IC seeks to deepen the connection between reading and life and make reading part of the city landscape. In celebration of the World Book Day on 23 April, carnival-like promotional activities, including game booths, workshops, exhibitions, talks and family reading activities, will be held from 22 to 23 April with a view to enriching the cultural life and leisure entertainment of the public and fostering a citywide reading ambience.

The “4.23 Reading in the City” this year will continuously promote reading points and invite all sectors of society to serve as reading points by running spontaneous reading activities from 15 to 23 April wherever and in whatever forms. The promotion period will be held until 19 April and all sectors of society are welcome to participate. Moreover, through the linkage with Hong Kong and various cities in China, the event also features the “Half-Hour Reading Session” to promote cultural exchange between residents in these cities and enhance mutual bonds through reading.

“Young Children Reading Programme” launched to promote reading among children and teenagers

In order to encourage parents to develop a reading habit with children starting from the early stages of education and to stimulate the cognitive development of infants and toddlers, IC launches a range of measures for family reading this year. The “Young Children Reading Programme” is launched for the first time, distributing “reading packs” to local young children and providing books and recommended reading lists suitable for children of different ages as they read with their parents. Further details will be announced in due course.

Furthermore, to continuously optimise reading spaces, IC launches the “Reading Space Enhancement Programme for Children and Teenagers” this year to provide readers of different ages with public spaces that are more comfortable and suitable for families and teenagers. A “young children reading space” is expected to be set up in the Taipa Library in the third quarter, where interactive game installations and books suitable for young children will be available, and family-friendly activities will also be held from time to time to provide residents with a happy space for family reading and interactive experiences. In addition, a dedicated space for teenagers will be added to the Seac Pavi Van Library in the fourth quarter, where a motion-sensing game zone, a board game and social area, and a photo area will be set up to attract teenagers who love to pursue, explore and express themselves to delve into new knowledge and find out more about themselves in the library, making the library a venue for interaction and leisure.

Electronic library services optimised to facilitate the establishment of a smart city

In order to facilitate the development of smart library services, a number of functions have been added to the mobile application “My Library”, including library card application and renewal, multi-account management and online payment, which allow the public to pay fees for their overdue or lost/broken items through the electronic payment platform. Meanwhile, the new feature “My Borrowing Books” will be added to “Macao One Account”, allowing the public to use public library service with ease. Further details will be announced by the Public Administration and Civil Service Bureau in due course.

Moreover, the enquiry robot “Lib” and library inventory robot have also been introduced for the public to obtain reading resources more easily and enjoy the convenience of smart reading. The library inventory robot is equipped with RFID that enables precise positioning of books and a three-dimensional map that renders an inventory-checking speed of 25,000 books per hour, as well as AI vision and laser radar that enables flexible obstacle avoidance.

Reading incentive programmes to be rolled out with schools

IC will join hands with DSEDJ to launch the “Fun Family Reading” activities this year, which will be promoted to local students from kindergarten (K1) to primary 3 from May, with a view to encouraging parents to enjoy reading time together with their children in public libraries in the form of completing family reading tasks. Participating families will stand the chance of winning more parent-child experiences with their points accumulated. The “Student Fun Reading Award Scheme” will be rolled out in the new school year to encourage primary 4 to form 6 students to foster the habit of reading both on and off campus, and reward students and their schools based on the frequency they visit the libraries and borrow books. A “Fun Reading School Commendation Scheme” title will be awarded to schools that actively promote the school reading programme.

In addition, IC will also enhance book borrowing services at associations and schools, and the library’s publicity van will be put into service this year for promotional purposes, book delivery, and book crossing activities, thus providing reading resources to the community. Meanwhile, self-service kiosks will be set up at schools on a trial basis to facilitate teachers and students in reserving, borrowing, and returning books from public libraries while on campus.

Macao is served as “a base for exchange and cooperation where Chinese culture is the mainstream and diverse cultures coexist”, and IC hopes to foster a life-long reading habit among local residents and propel a citywide reading ambience across local society with the series of reading promotional programmes.

The press conference of the “City of Reading” activity series was held today (13 April) at the Macao Cultural Centre and was attended by the President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Leong Wai Man; the Deputy Director of the Education and Youth Development Bureau, Wong Ka Ki; the Vice President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Cheong Lai San; the Acting Vice President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Ho Hong Pan; the Head of the Department of Public Library Management of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, Loi Chi Pang; the University Librarian of the Macau University of Science and Technology, Zhao Xichen; the University Librarian of the City University of Macau, Shi Li Mei; the Library Director of the Macao Polytechnic University, Ines Lau; the Librarian of the Macao Institute for Tourism Studies, Lei Ka Man; the Head Librarian of the University of Saint Joseph, Emily Chan; the Assistant University Librarian of the University of Macau, Billy Leung; and the President of the Macao Library and Information Management Association, Wong Kwok Keung.

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