Monday, September 19, 2011

World Bank's Access to Information and Open Data Initiative - Highlighted

The Knowledge and Information Resource Network (KIRN) has conducted a 3-day seminar-workshop with the theme:“Library Tourism and Hospitality: The Innovative Way of Endearing Libraries and Harnessing Knowledge for the 21stCentury Education ” Last September 8-10, 2011 at St. Paul University Philippines (SPUP), Tuguegarao City. The objectives of the seminar-workshop were a) to bring together the librarians and library staff in all the Paulinian schools in the country, Basic Education and Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in the region and create a library network; b) to share SPUP’s library innovation, best practices, and resources being a recipient of the World Bank- Knowledge for Development Center (WB-KDC); c) to promote and enrich the services and resources of libraries and information centers through library tourism and hospitality; and d) to enhance partnership and networking among libraries and information centers. Said activity was attended by the administrators, librarians and library staff of St. Paul Schools across the country, Basic Education and HEIs in the region, Public Libraries, and Library Science students.

The first day was highlighted with the manifestation of SPUP-KIRN’s best practices and services presented by KIRN Director, Dr. Rosalinda Tanguilan. At the end of the day, the participants were spiritually revitalized during the visit to the Basilica Minore of Our Lady of Piat. For more than 400 years the pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Piat has been a significant event in the lives of devotees of the people in the Cagayan Valley. More than anything else, the Pilgrimage to Our Lady of Piat is a devotional and spiritual journey from one's home to the Shrine of Our Lady of Piat to venerate Our Blessed Mother, to ask for Her intercession and to thank Her for the favors received from God through Her intercession.

Mr. Henry Grageda of World Bank Philippines started the second day session with the updates on WB’s Access to Information and Open Data Initiative (ODI). Meanwhile, Mr. Ronaldo Sumait, the SPUP-KDC Librarian/Knowledge Facilitator oriented the participants about the resources, services and activities of the KDC. After which Mr. Sumait demonstrated the use of ODI and its importance to research studies. The participants were given a chance to explore and navigate the data during the hands-on at the computer laboratory. Furthermore, the topic on web-based technologies and resources in library tourism was instigated by Mr. Santiago Tagacay III. The web-pages created by each participant will be useful in promoting library tourism and hospitality in their respective institutions. The two topics discussed in the afternoon were entitled “Marketing and Networking of Libraries and Information Centers”; and “The 21st Century Library Practices/Events: Execute with Sense and Style”. The former was presented by Dr. Reyza Alenzuela, Director of Thomas Jefferson Information Center and the latter was delivered by Prof. Rhea Rowena Apolinario of University of the Philippines, School of Library and Information Studies. The group was mesmerized with the beauty of nature when they explored the Callao Caves, boating at Mororan Falls and watched the sunset flight of millions of bats looking for food at dusk. The cave is the best known tourist attraction of Cagayan province. It is located in the town of Peñablanca, a thirty minute drive from Tuguegarao City. It requires little test of patience as you go up the stairs with close to 200 steps before seeing the colossal limestone and rock formations inside. It is made up of seven chambers and various formations: the column, chapel, skeleton, elephant’s head, praying angel, rocket, lion’s head and dog’s head formations.

The “Impact and Challenges of Library Tourism and Hospitality in Library” was the last topic deliberated during the third day by Mr. Roderick Ramos, PAARL President, De La Salle University.Moreover, Dr. Tanguilan facilitated the organization of the library network. After the closing ceremonies, the participants proceeded to Iguig Calvary Hills located about 16 kilometers from Tuguegarao City. In the 11-hectare rolling hills are the larger-than-life-size concrete 14 Stations of the Cross depicting Jesus Christ’s suffering before his death at Mount Calvary. The place also features a three centuries old well, Dominican convent ruins, and the prosaic view of the Cagayan River which resembles that of the River Jordan. Built of concentric bricks, the church has buttresses, one of the very few left in the country.
The endeavor ended with a farewell lunch at the LRC lobby. The participants are now going back to their respective institutions bringing along with them the innovative ways of endearing libraries and harnessing knowledge for the 21st century education through library tourism and hospitality.

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