Prison Library Campaign

Nepal Library Foundation strongly believes prisons should have facilities where prisoners can educate themselves and learn new skills. Upon their release, the knowledge and skill acquired in the prison will help them to rehabilitate into the society with honour and dignity. Until now, except a few libraries in prisons in western Nepal established about three years ago (NLF was involved in the establishment), Nepal’s prisons did not have libraries. Cognizant of this, about six months ago, the NLF Nepal started a campaign to establish libraries in all district level prisons in Nepal. The prisoners are consulted to decide the genera of books they would like have in the library. Generally, the library holdings consist of books on various skill development; Nepal and world history; general knowledge and so on. Besides providing books, NLF also trains the prison staff /prisoners in library management and in setting up a Book Club, where the inmates meet periodically to discuss books they have read. Nepal’s Local Government’s officials and prison officials have been very helpful in executing the project.   

Endowment Fund Campaign

Since its registration in late 2005 as a Canadian Charity with a mission to “enhance education opportunity to Nepali people through the medium of libraries”, the NLF has assisted in establishing libraries, both digital and conventional, in over 238 schools, communities and prisons across the country. Besides assisting in libraries, the NLF also provides training in library management; setting up ‘Book Clubs” to promote reading habits; setting up a ‘Home Library’ and advocates for library development in the country. We estimate over a million people have benefited from this work.

Nepal does not have a law that makes community or school libraries mandatory. The need to continue NLF’s work is therefore critical. The NLF is run entirely by volunteers and targeted project-based funding it receives from donors who value education and community service. This has made it possible to complete large number of projects, but has created enormous strain in managing its operating cost.

NLF Nepal has started a campaign to raise funds to establish an Endowment fund to address the situation and provide continuity to its work. The interest from the fund will be used to defray the foundations operational costs. We implore you to join the campaign and contribute to the fund. Your help will help us to open the doors of libraries across the nation.

E-Library User Training

The travel restrictions due to Covid limited NLF’s technical personnel’s ability of on-site visits to libraries to to provide technical support. To alleviate this situation, NLF started to provide basic training to set up a local area network of computers and to connect them to e-library server in NLF’s office in Kathmandu. Computer teachers in schools with NLF supported libraries were invited to join the training. Under this program, computer teachers Sri Shesh Kant Dhakal and Sri Rajesh Adhikari of Sri Tri-Sahid Secondary School, Sanja and Sri Bal Kalyan Secondary School, Lamjung respectively were trained and servers with e-library content were handed over to them.


Advisors to NLF, Nepal

Nepal Library Foundation, Nepal Board’s meeting of January 2022 appointed the following are NLF’s new advisors.  

  1. Govinda Bandi, ex-Minister of Law, Government of Nepal
  2. Ramesh Kharel, Former DIG, Nepal Police
  3. Mahabir Pun, Entrepreneur, Innovator and Social worker
  4. Ram Thapa, Patron, NRNA

They add to the current advisors Dr. Jugel Bhurtel and Dr. Binda Pandey and together bring over hundred years of experience in management; education and social work in Nepal. NLF greatly appreciates their willingness to advise the NLF as it moves forward in its mission.

E-Library in Sri Jan Jagrity, Secondary School, Solokhumbu

NLF provided technical support to install an e-library server in Sri Jan Jagrity, Secondary School in September 2021. There are 20 computers in the school. Eightytwo years old Prem Kumari Shrestha, a resident of Okhaldhungda, contribute her old age allowance to cover the cost of system management for this project.  The funding raising for the project was coordinated by NLF’s International Coordinator Shibaji Shrestha.


Women’s Computer Literacy Program

Following the very successful “Womens Computer Literacy “programme, in Sangam Library, Gaighat, Udayapur about six years ago, the NLF provided Computers to Chaturbhujeshwor Community Study Center (CCLC) Sukhepokhari Sarlahi to run their “Women’s Computer Literacy” programme. The three months long basic level course was completed in April 2021 with technical support from IT Plus Sarlahi.

CCLC chairman Mr. Yamini Kumar Deep says the next phase of the training shall resume after the CoVid lockdown is lifted. The course was run in accelerated time and completed in two months. Nineteen homemakers participated in the training.  


Home Libraries Initiative

During the period of lock down of the country due to CoVid-19 in 2020-2021, when access to libraries was restricted due to restriction in movement, the Nepal Library Foundation came up with the idea to promote every home to establish library within its premises. Consultation for execution of the idea started in January 2021 and by March, 2021, it had turned into a national campaign. The campaign’s mission is to encourage every house to systematically arrange books, magazines and other materials at a visible location in the house, for example the drawing room and promote reading.

By March “Home Library Coordinators” had been appointed in 18 districts. Generous donations of books have been received from publisher and a recognized writer Chayadatta Newpane and Mausami Shrestha, a Nepali resident in the USA. Newpane has donated two books each to 152 houses and newpane has pledged Rs. 2000 for ten poor families.

The municipality of Triguna , Udayayapur, Gaighat now requires a room dedicated to a “ Home Library” in all building permit applications. A copy of the municipalities’ order is included in the Gallery.

“Pustakalaya Awaj”, Nepal’s only magazine dedicated to library development, published a story on the development of the “Home Library” campaign in its April, 2021 issue.


Sangam Community Library and Suhrid Library - A Video Travelogue

A visiting team of Canadian volunteers travelled to Sangam Library and did a video this year. It includes the sights and sounds of people who're directly benefitting from this venture and the decades long work of the NLF team. Huge thanks to Dan Little and his team for creating a beautiful video.



MoU signed among NRNA, NLF-Canada and NLF-Nepal

A Memorandum of Understanding for the partnership framework among Non Resident Nepali Association (NRNA), Nepal Library Foundation - Canada (NLF - Canada) and Nepal Library Foundation - Nepal (NLF - Nepal) was signed 15 July 2020. The partnership is a key initiative to bring together the three main parties that are aligned in the development and growth of public libraries in Nepal. As per the MoU,

Dolakha Learning Center Update

After the earthquakes of 2015, and the severe damage inflicted on the school buildings in Dolakha, the NLF was involved in the building of a learning centre composed of a computer room and a library and another room to provide a resource to the community and school after the school buildings were devastated. Apart from the building itself geotechnical work needed to be carried out. Significant assistance for this was provided by BGC Ltd, a Vancouver based engineering company.

NLF helps setup ten libraries inside prisons in Karnali Region

Nepal’s police officers are not usually known for establishing educational facilities in the prisons they manage however Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIGP) Mahesh Bikram Shah is an exception. He is an established author and the recipient in 2007 (2063 BS) of the Madan Puraskar, Nepal’s premier literary award. “I have always been interested in writing and literature but I had never thought prisoners might like to read and that prisoners would benefit from libraries” he says, “The epiphany moment occurred during my interaction with a prisoner about eighteen months ago.

A Grade Seven Class in Surrey BC Helps a School in Nepal Get Its First Library

Baira Mahadev Elementary School is located in the scenic village of Lapsephedi in Shankarapur municipality, near Kathmandu. Poor road infrastructure means long walks for many students to reach the school. Lapsephedi is a small community of about 5,000 people most of whom are historically marginalized subsistence farmers who barely survive on less than the equivalent of $2 dollars a day earned through manual labour. Baira Mahadev Elementary currently has 105 students, ranging from 4 to 14 years old.

Renewed Hope in Earthquake Devastated Dolakha

Fri, 06/08/2018 - 04:26 - Shree Sundarawati Aadharbhoot BidhyalayaFlickr

By Naresh Koirala

The village of Damarang, a community in the Suspa area of Dolakha district, has a history of strong commitment to education and prior to the devastating earthquake of April 2015, had recently finished updating its school building of Shree Sundarawati Aadharbhoot Bidhyalaya. These were destroyed along with thousands of residences. As a result the community was left with no adequate building to house even a basic school program.  

A Library Gets a New Life in Brahmapuri, Janakpur

Wed, 06/06/2018 - 22:19 - suhrid_library_1Flickr

The Suhrid Pustakalaya, in the South Central Nepal, city of Janakpur, was established by Saroj Koirala in the mid 1950’s and thrived until it was shut down in 1960 after the King dissolved Parliament and assumed power. Elected political leaders were imprisoned and civil liberties crushed. Public libraries were banned and forcibly closed. Saroj Koirala went into exile in India but was assassinated in 1972. After the overthrow of the monarchy Ms Leela Koirala, Saroj Koirala’s widow, became a member of parliament. 

Public Awareness Program organized

Thu, 06/07/2018 - 22:07 - Public Awareness Program about the importance of e-library Myagdi 2Flickr

A public awareness program about the library and its works was held at the offices of Federation of Nepalese Chamber of Commerce & Industries Office, Myagdi on 2073 Poush 3 in collaboration with Myagdi Overseas Nepalese Association (MONA) A total of 89 institutions participated in the program that was run by Dhan Kumar Shrestha and Basanta Shrestha. The founding president Naresh Koirala and Ram Kumar Shrestha of the District Education Office presided over the function.



Inauguration of two more electronic libraries

Ex-students and E-Library helping group, Japan helped establish E-Library in Paradise Secondary School. NRNA, UK helped to install E-Library in Sangam Community Library. On 2073 Mangshir 2, both of these e-libraries were inaugurated by NLF's Founding President Mr. Naresh Koirala and NLF's President Mr. Kapil Dev Thapa. learning materials were donated to the Paradise Secondary School at the event.

President's Message - Nepal Library Foundation After Ten Years

Nepal Library Foundation, Canada celebrated its tenth anniversary in March 2015. Our founding mission statement was to ‘support library development in Nepal and the establishment of a national library system’.

Our work on the ground started in 2007 when we donated over 7000 books and seven computers to The Society for Kathmandu Valley Public Libraries. To date NLF Canada has raised over $150,000.

This has directly supported the establishment of over 40 libraries in Nepal. It has supplied 150 computers and tens of thousands of books to libraries across the nation, from Humla in the North to Simara in the South; from Danghighat in the East to Tikaphur in the West. It also provided startup and support funding of over $50,000 to Open Learning Exchange, Nepal (OLE) to help establish Nepal’s first digital library and knowledge repository, the e-Pustakalaya.

The NLF has developed into an effective support agency for schools, colleges and communities who want to establish or upgrade libraries. It has developed and implemented a government recognized training program for library management and, in conjunction with OLE, a course in network deployment of the local server based e-Pustakalaya to substantially reduce installation costs of the resource.

It has introduced reading clubs, established education and information centers in earthquake affected areas and developed computer training programs specifically for women in rural areas.

NLF assisted library “has changed the culture of the Academy” says Senior Supt Kharel of the Central Police Academy

In April 2015 the NLF assisted the Middle Region Police Training Centre in the upgrading of an existing library including provision of library management training, installation and configuration of an e-Pustakalaya networked server, and provision of books and computers donated by Dr Vijay Jha and Mr Kapil Thapa.

A chance meeting of Mr Sapkota of NLF Nepal with Senior Superintendent Ramesh Kharel at the opening celebration of an NLF sponsored library led to the request for NLF’s assistance in upgrading the Training Centre’s library.Fundraising for the project was coordinated by Mr Sapkota.

The library now has fifty networked computers linked to an e-Pustakalaya resource.

“The library has changed the culture of the academy.” says Supt Kharej “Trainee officers are spending much of their leisure time in the library. This is quite heartening. They seem to be anxious to learn how policing is done in other parts of the world. There is constant demand for police magazines and new books especially police investigative stories.”

The NLF is well positioned to provide a cost effective service to institutions wishing to upgrade their library facilities. With ten years experience in library deployment, it is very gratifying to see how well the implementation model that has been developed over this time is capable of being adapted to diverse situations.

The NRN ‘Build a Library in Your Village’ Campaign

The NLF was officially recognised by the Non Resident Nepali organisation (NRN) in 2007 as a partner in fulfilling one of the NRN’s goals—that of promoting libraries and literacy, The NLF has positioned itself to provide cost effective project development and management services to schools and communities wishing to build and run libraries.

Taking up this challenge, NRN Europe Deputy Regional Coordinator Mr Som Nath Sapkota started the ‘Build a Library in your Village’ campaign to inspire Nepali living overseas to contribute to the funding of libraries in their home towns and villages.. A number of library projects have now been completed with the input of the NLF as a result of this initiative. Mr Sapkota raised funds to build a library at Janjagriti Higher Secondary School, Kandebas, Baglung District from which he graduated with his Senior Leaving Certificate. The library was inaugurated on 2 October 2015. He also coordinated fund raising for the expansion and updating of libraries in the Shree Laxmi Higher Secondary School Chitwan which is is now complete. Eighteen computers were installed and networked to an e-Pustakalaya server. NRN groups raised $14,000 for the project.

Jana Jagriti School Library, Kadebas, Baglung was expanded with a number of networked computers along with an e-Pustakalaya server. The budget of $24,000 was raised with the help of NRN groups.