Congress theme: “Open access to knowledge - promoting sustainable progress”

Libraries in Haiti: an update

Deutsch | Español | français | Русский | العربية | 中文

13 August 2010 13:45 - 15:45 | Room: Congressen Hall

Chair: Ingrid Parent, IFLA President-elect.

No one at this conference should be unaware of the terrible earthquake that hit the Caribbean island of Haiti in January 2010. Hundreds of thousands of lives were lost, many more people injured, buildings destroyed and the infrastructure of the severely heavily damaged.

Unsurprisingly, libraries and the people that make them possible were also hit hard.

At tomorrow's meeting (Session 115), representatives of the Haitian library community will inform us about the current situation of their institutions.   Several short films illustrating this will also be presented.

Colleagues will tell about several aid projects currently underway and suggest the means by which the international library community can contribute to the reconstruction of a new library landscape for Haiti.

There will be ample opportunities to pose questions. Simultaneous interpretation into all IFLA languages will be available at this session.

See also: IFLA's Haiti update page.

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IFLA's Governing Board has resolved to pay special attention to the library situation in Haiti, after the earthquake of January 2010, this session pays a tribute to our colleagues in that country and is aimed at expressing our solidarity and raising support for the devastated country.

After an introduction of IFLA President Ellen Tise, who visited Haiti recently, a number of presentations will be made, including some videos. The main speakers are: the Director of the National Library of Haïti, Françoise Thybulle (about the state of the national and academic libraries), Elisabeth Pierre-Louis, Director of FOKAL = Foundation for Knowledge and Liberty about the current state of public libraries in the country.

Their presentations will be followed by a report of Danielle Mincio (IFLA) and Christophe Jacob (ICA) who recently made two working trips to Haiti on behalf of the International Committee of the Blue Shield. The report is on the project "Ark/Arche" which aims at safeguarding library and archival materials that were effected by the earthquake.

Some additional speakers will be announced at the last minute. There will be ample time for public discussion, questions, answers.