New Partnership on Economic Opportunity in the Philippines

Beyond Access is pleased to announce a new partnership with the City Government of Davao, Philippines and the Davao City Library. We are proud to support the City Government in its efforts to transform its libraries into centers for economic opportunity.

After attending the Beyond Access 2012 conference, the Davao City Library hosted a series of public forums to discuss the community’s vision for a modern library. A common theme emerged in these forums: communities on the outskirts of the city have limited access to services offered at the city center. Because Davao City covers an area approximately twice the size of New York City, trips to the city center to access economic opportunities and related services can be time and cost prohibitive.

The new partnership will leverage the Davao City Library, a network of 9 libraries and 12 reading centers, to extend information access and services to communities that can’t reach the city center. The city government is already renovating a pilot group of three libraries and one reading center to accommodate the new computers and other technology Beyond Access will provide.

Beyond Access is also working with the Molave Development Foundation to train librarians on how to teach basic ICT skills and how to manage ICT resources within their libraries. The librarians will also receive guidance on how to design services for people in their communities to provide them with greater access to economic opportunities.

This partnership will bring together resources and support from the Davao City Government, the Davao City Library, local civil society partners, and Beyond Access to begin testing a new model for libraries in the Philippines — a model of a modern library that helps people gain the skills they need to succeed in a growing information economy.

This partnership is part of a series of Beyond Access projects aiming to develop best practices for building collaborative partnerships between governments, libraries, and civil society to achieve community development goals.