ABU DHABI, -- Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development, has launched the "Book Bank" initiative to mark the UAE's month of reading in March, which is one of the most important projects implemented by the ministry.

"It contributes to raising the level of cultural and knowledge awareness among members of society and implementing the culture of reading and principles of goodness due to its role in promoting the spirit of social responsibility and cooperation," Sheikh Nahyan said.

He pointed out the initiative stems from the announcement of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, for 2017 to be the year of giving and comes in line with the national reading policies and plans of the ministry of culture.

The minister assured that the success witnessed today in implementing the National Reading Policy for 2016-2026, emphasises that the country under the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the follow-up of Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, is moving in the right direction and following the footsteps of founding fathers.

He stressed that reading is the key to creating a promising Emirati generation including innovators, scientists and thinkers, a generation open to knowledge and enlightenment. "From this perspective, the ministry is focused on delivering initiatives that confirms the position of reading and deepen its culture. The initiatives also focus on the activation of community cooperation making books available to everyone," he said.

Explaining the "Book Bank" initiative, Sheikh Nahyan said, it is blended with the culture of reading in the UAE society and merges with the general goals of the year of giving, through four main related steps.

The first step focuses on the introduction of channels for receiving different kinds of books (used or new) from community members, institutions and publishing houses. Special boxes will be distributed across the country's malls, cultural centres and schools for this purpose.

Then these books will be classified and displayed in 'Charity Book Exhibitions', organised in ministry's centres across the UAE to be sold to the public at nominal prices as an encouragement to buy books and exchange knowledge.

The third step is the 'Knowledge Scholarships', which focuses on supporting refugee camps with books and knowledge. In the last step, 'Knowledge Volunteering' will be implemented, allowing society members to participate in volunteer services, activities and programmes to promote reading.

Sheikh Nahyan called on all segments of the society to interact, make use and cooperate with these initiatives. He called on UAE residents to be part of the "Book Bank" project by donating and taking part in the Charity Book Exhibitions and Knowledge Volunteering.

Source: Emirates News Agency