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23 Nov 2020

Increase in Community Literacy Index: Exploration of Potential Needs Literacy

Asahan Regency, North Sumatra - The social inclusion-based library transformation program aims to make library an open space for people to share experiences, learn contextually, and practice work skills to improve the quality of life. This program in 2019 was successfully practiced in 21 provincial libraries, 60 regency/municipal libraries, and 300 village libraries.

"Through this program, the National Library hopes that there will be an increase in welfare in the community so that it will raise the Human Development Index (IPM) for the next five years," explained the Deputy of Library Resources Development of the National Library Deni Kurniadi on the Socialization of Community Literacy Index (ILM) Improvement in Asahan Regency, North Sumatra, Monday, (11/23).

The government's priority in the Medium-Term Development Plan (RPJMN) of 2020-2024 focuses on the development of quality and competitive human resources. To achieve this direction requires the development of human character through strengthening a culture of literacy, innovation and creativity.

"Literacy is needed so that Indonesia is not just become a market for economically developed countries, but must begin to be brave enough exploring all the potential of its natural wealth to become a product or service that is beneficial to large community," added Deni.

Literacy skill is not limited to reading and writing. Literacy is a skill. At least, there are four levels of literacy that are used as parameters for progress. First, the ability to collect quality sources of reading material or information. Second, the ability to interpret implied and written. Third, the ability to generate new ideas, innovations, or creativities. And fourth, literacy is the ability to create goods/services for audiences.

"Literacy has a positive contribution in order to build creativity and innovation, and improve social skills that are needed in the industrial revolution 4.0. National Library targets Indonesian literacy culture to reach 71.0 in 2024 from the base line of 55.0 in 2018. So, let's design the library, including collections and facilities and infrastructure so that the community can make used the most of it," explained Deni.

Meanwhile, member of the Commission X of DPR RI Djohar Arifin Husin admitted that what is currently happen in Indonesia is a paradox. Internationally, Indonesia is the country with the second largest library in the world after India. However, Indonesia's literacy rate is low.

Therefore, Djohar welcomes the social inclusion-based library transformation program to catch up with literacy lags. According to Djohar, this library transformation program actually makes the role and function of the library expand. Library is no longer standing around waiting for the visitors to come but go down directly, involved in various activities that are useful for improving the welfare of the community.  

"The social inclusion-based library transformation model is a library service approach that is committed to improve the quality of life. If necessary, build a quality library in each village. The funds can come from village funds, village or central government funds, or through the private sector,” said Djohar.

On the same occasion, the Head of the Library and Archives Service Office of Asahan Regency Misli M. Noor expressed his support for the literacy movement initiated by the National Library. Noor admits that the recent technological developments have even led to people's enthusiasm for preserving the reading culture.

"The presence of information and communication technology has accelerated globalization. It is better if these developments can also add insight and increase the imaginative aspects of society," said Misli.

In particular, Misli highlighted the condition of literacy in Asahan Regency according to which he was in the stage of awakening. The existence of a number of communities, literacy forums and reading parks provide space for literacy advancement in Asahan Regency.

"They are active in carrying out literacy service from village to village, trying to provide renewable innovations to children so that they have a literacy spirit," he added.

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