Official Blog of Bakul Foundation

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Join the library movement in Orissa

“If not us, who? If not now, when?”

Slogan by Czech University Students in Prague, Nov. 1989.

Bakul Foundation
is a non-profit organization that promotes volunteerism and channelizes cumulative efforts towards community development. As Helen Keller said, “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much”.

That is why we have started a movement to get thousand of us (to begin with) together to explore the possibilities of volunteerism and collective effort by contributing in small ways to the program Donate books: Build a Library so that we can set up a public library in Bhubaneswar by April 1st, 2007.

For us, community development initiatives are not just confined to the immediate tangible goals, but go beyond to invoke and instil the spirit of volunteerism that underlines the project. For example, we plan to organize book reading sessions at schools for underprivileged children. But we not only aim to make books accessible to socio-economically deprived children but also have the more fundamental goal of creating a group of volunteers among the children and help them take up their own developmental initiatives, like adult literacy campaigns within their own neighbourhood/community. Bakul Foundation, therefore, not only brings together volunteers for community development initiatives but uses their experience and skills to generate new groups and generations of volunteers. Similarly a tree plantation programme would not just involve the plantation of trees through volunteers, but we shall make a conscious effort to make environmentalists out of those volunteers.

Our vision of what we seek to create is of a library that is not merely a collection of books but an open forum that actively promotes a sensible reading culture among youth; a public space that is proactively used for making books and the world of knowledge accessible to underprivileged children and students; and an institution that works towards generating the spirit of volunteerism among its users to undertake further initiatives in community development programs. A library then becomes a potent instrument of building people’s capabilities to actualise the opportunities of a ‘knowledge economy’ and lessen the growing socio-economic inequalities.

Donate books: Build a Library aims to find a donor for every book in the library. Each of us can contribute by donating books/multimedia kits or money to buy the same. You could also actively contribute in terms of ideas and suggestions and take part in deciding how to achieve the fundamental objectives of the program by posting your comments on our blog or by writing to us at If you have any queries, please visit our FAQ section.

If you share our vision then please follow the link and take our online pledge to join the program. Your pledge is crucial because we shall be in a position to start the library only if a thousand people like you, who appreciate our efforts, pledge to make a difference.

To take the pledge, click this

“Somewhere on this planet, someone has a solution to each of the world’s problems. It might be one of us. With your help, we can build a more helpful world.”