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27 Aug 2020

Director of National Library Appreciates Literacy Tourism Programme in Tegal


Salemba, Jakarta – Director of National Library of Indonesia Muhammad Syarif Bando appreciates Tegal Reading Mother Roro Kusnabilla Erfa for her programme in improving reading culture in her region. It is expected that Reading Mother Roro’s programme that promotes literacy tourism can be an inspiration for many to be adopted in their respective regions.

This was conveyed by Syarif Bando in a webinar with the theme "The Role of Reading Mother in Adaptation to New Norms to Improve Community Literacy" which was held in Jakarta on Thursday (27/8/2020). In the webinar, Roro Kusnabilla’s programme succeeded in attracting participants’ attention. Syarif added, this shows the synergy between National Library and Tegal Municipal Government in improving community literacy.

On this occasion, Syarif Bando emphasised four levels of literacy. "There are four levels of literacy to be achieved. First, the ability to collect reading material sources. Second, the ability to understand what is implied and expressed. Third, the ability to express new ideas, creativity, or innovation. And fourth, the ability to create quality goods or services that can be used in global competition," he said.

Roro Kusnabilla stated that literacy tourism is carried out by visits to schools, kelurahan, to sub-districts, empowering reading corners and forums, strengthening programmes with local public libraries and literacy activists, developing literacy villages, and involving 46 reading ambassadors representing all elements of society. These activities resulted in several book titles created by students of SMPN 1 Tegal and the community.

During Covid-19 pandemic, Roro Kusnabilla remained active in transmitting reading virus through webinars and community empowerment. Even so, she admits that it is difficult to carry out literacy tours due to restrictions on the number of participants. Therefore, she involved elements of society to run the programme. "I am assisted by reading ambassadors, literacy activists, community reading parks, PKK cadres to continue carrying out literacy tours and opening reading forums and reading corners in kelurahan, TBM (community reading park), so that children can keep reading," explained the woman who was inaugurated as Reading Mother on July 15, 2019.

To foster children's interest in reading, she provides tips to parents. "We make children love reading by telling stories, especially elementary school children, we invite them to listen to stories or fairy tales, but don't end it. So that the child is curious and reads the story book," she explained.

Meanwhile, Senior Librarian of National Library of Indonesia, Titiek Kismiyati, stated that in the new era of normality, libraries must continue to carry out their functions in an effort to improve community literacy. Titiek explained, according to Law Number 43 of 2007 on Libraries, libraries carry out five functions, namely as a vehicle for education, research, information, preservation, and recreation.

"Library service strategy can be implemented in three ways. First, opening the service face to face or onsite by following new normal health protocol at library. Then, via online can be a starting point for starting online services and activities, which should be carried out by libraries in the digital era, and finally, it can be a combination of face-to-face and online," she explained.

In the new era of normality, libraries can organise activities involving community but still comply with health restrictions and protocol. Such as onsite or face-to-face activities by limiting the number of participants, collection delivery-to-user activities, and online activities.





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