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Touring Mobile Library Hits the Road, Magistrate Hopes the Entire Island will have the Scent of Books

Touring Mobile Library Hits the Road, Magistrate Hopes the Entire Island will have the Scent of Books
Reporter: Li Tseng-Wang / Jincheng Township

Kinmen County Cultural Affairs Bureau invested over NT$2 million to build a large mobile library that can hold over 2,000 books. After Magistrate Chen Fu-Hai hosted the ignition ceremony yesterday morning, he declared the mobile library will hit the road to build a “culturally rich Kinmen” and create an “island of reading.” Magistrate Chen hopes that residents will “jump higher and see farther” through reading, and he applied for a library card on the spot and borrowed the book “Zheng Mian Kan Shi Jie (Positively Viewing the World),” hoping the entire island of Kinmen will have the scent of books.
The ignition ceremony of the touring mobile library was held in front of Kinmen County Cultural Affairs Bureau at 10:00 yesterday morning, and was jointly unveiled by Magistrate Chen, Council Member Cheng Tsang-Chiang, Director-General Lu Kun-Ho of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, and Chairperson Chen Tien-Cheng of Jincheng Township Elected Representatives. Tian Zhen Tang Lion Dance Troupe brought a spectacular lion dance performance as warm up for the ceremony.
During his speech Magistrate Chen said that Kinmen produced 50 Jinshi (the highest degree of imperial examinations) during the Song, Ming and Qing Dynasties, showing that Kinmen has had a scholarly atmosphere and many talents since ancient times, allowing it to have rich cultural heritage. He said that to carry forward this scholarly atmosphere they must start reading at a young age, and hoped that the mobile library will allow citizens in remote areas to conveniently borrow books they like; let adults and children read together, so they can stand on the shoulders of giants to jump higher, see farther, and let the entire island have the scent of books.
Magistrate Chen hoped to develop Kinmen into an island of reading, and let schools, communities and villages be filled with the scent of books and everyone fond of reading. He hoped that schools will establish excellent book software for students to gain easier access to books; the guidance of mothers telling stories will further help children be inspired and gain creativity.
Magistrate Chen approved of the efforts by staff members and volunteers of the Cultural Affairs Bureau, and stressed that the county government will fully support cultural work. The first stop of the mobile library is in Lieyu Township, separated by a passage of water. He hopes that students will read and find introspection or new understanding from at least one sentence.
Director-General Lu Kun-Ho of the Cultural Affairs Bureau spoke frankly that Kinmen people did not often borrow books in the past. He hoped that the touring mobile library will increase citizens’ interest in reading. He also said that the service area of the touring mobile library is not limited to schools, and will also visit townships and villages of Kinmen County, so that citizens can enjoy the fun of reading.
Council Member Chen Tsang-Chiang jokingly said the idea of a touring mobile library came from his “small stool mobile office” and he should collect a licensing fee! Chen Tsang-Chiang indicated that quite a few Kinmenese people have served as government officials since the Ming and Qing Dynasties, and government officials cannot have an empty head, hoping that the touring mobile library will increase reading among Kinmen residents, since it is the foundation of all things.
During the ignition ceremony, Magistrate Chen commended the top ten “book borrowers,” in which 25 year old Hsu Chi-Neng placed first with 143 books in six months. Hsu Chi-Neng graduated from the Department of Tourism Management of National Quemoy University, and especially likes to read geography and philosophy books; he is currently reading “Being and Nothingness” by French philosopher Sartre. He said that he read the book 3, 4 times before understanding it.
Furthermore, Huang Chien-Ping’s family of four, including his 9 year old daughter and 2 year old son, often borrow books and all of them were on the top ten list. After Kinmen’s touring mobile library hits the road, it will first make a stop in Lieyu Township on June 20th, and will visit all 5 townships; it will even visit campuses in September and October.
The Cultural Affairs Bureau indicated that the mobile library was adapted from a 6 ton truck and can hold over 2,000 books; the body of the truck has adorable drawings of Kinmen, including Wind Lion God, common otter, and Jyuguang Tower, that are popular among adults and children alike.
The mobile library is designed with open shelves that contain illustrated books, children books and much more, and is linked to the automated library database for citizens to borrow and return books, making it truly a mobile library. Magistrate Chen and Council Member Chen Tsang-Chiang both applied for a library card on the spot, and Magistrate Chen borrowed the book “Zheng Mian Kan Shi Jie (Positively Viewing the World)” while reiterating the importance of positive power.
Sources say that the original mobile library of the Cultural Affairs Bureau was smaller and carried fewer books, so the bureau allocated a budget of roughly NT$2.6 million to build the current mobile library capable of carrying around 2,000 books; the exterior also has LED lights for policy promotion. The mobile library not only has books for borrowing, but also provides outdated magazines or citizens to take free of charge; in the village where the mobile library is currently stopping at, villagers can apply for a library card and borrow or return books.

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  • Date:2016-12-08