SINGAPORE - The National Library Board (NLB) rolled out a brand new mobile library, called Molly, on Thursday (Sept 22) as part of its ongoing commitment to expand reading in the country.
Sponsored by Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple, the new Molly was built with accessibility in mind, sporting a hydraulic wheelchair lift for the convenience of the disabled and their caretakers. It also contains a magnetic whiteboard for use during activity sessions, and stations placed at a height that allows young readers to borrow and return books by themselves.
The mobile library is no stranger to Singapore's streets - specially designed libraries on wheels have been spreading the joy of reading since the 1960s.
"We had very few libraries (in the 1960s) and at that stage, Singapore was a growing country,"said Mr Lim Kok Eng, 57, region head of NLB's public library operations.
"The mobile library services then was a way to reach out to the community to bring reading to them. When we revived it in 2008, the target audience was different."
Now, the mobile libraries are designed to reach out to the under-served community - including orphans and those with special needs - who would not be able to visit the library on their own.
Said Mr Lim: "There are students who borrow books for the first time - these are instances that give us joy, that we are serving the community. It is very fulfilling."
Molly has been well-received by the public, serving an average of 11,000 visitors per month.