Libraries have always been the bedrock of any civilised society. Pustaka Negeri Sarawak is the embodiment of Sarawak’s intellectual heritage. It provides unlimited access to knowledge, culture and information services for the benefit of the society, and is a sanctuary for lifelong learning.
20 years of leading Sarawak’s information and services industry
Pustaka Negeri Sarawak has come a long way since it first began operations on Jan 2, 2000. From just 11 officers in the beginning, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak grew to having a workforce of more than 180 staff members, and is on the frontier of knowledge acculturation and enlightenment throughout Sarawak. As Sarawak’s major hub of information resources, Pustaka does not operate alone. It links with all archives, information centres, village and district libraries to provide publicly accessible information services, in both digital and print media. The main HQ in Kuching is also known as the ‘Library in the Garden’, whereby it is surrounded by a picturesque 92-acre park and lake available for public use such as recreational activities, cultural exchanges or other social purposes.
Expanding of libraries and archives services
Besides administering village and district libraries in Sarawak, Pustaka has three other subsidiary bodies under its care, namely Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Miri, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu, and the State Records Repository.
Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Miri was established in 2002 to meet the demands of delivering up-to-date and diverse information services in the northern region of Sarawak. It functions similarly to its official headquarters in Kuching. Situated near Miri City Fan, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Miri is a two-storey IT library with a hybrid library concept. Using ICT infrastructure, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Miri operates on the combination of print, and digital information resources for the northern Sarawak community. A tranquil library right in the heart of Miri City, it is surrounded by five different gardens, namely Garden of Vision, Islamic Garden, Chinese Garden, Formal Garden and Botanical Garden.
Aligned with the Sarawak State Library Ordinance 1999, Part IV, a depository services sector was created in 2002. Furthering the expansion of depository services is its State Records Repository building at Sultan Tengah Road, approximately 8km away from the library’s HQ in Kuching. This three-storey building serves as the primary records management body that regulates and preserves materials worthy of archival value, as well as particularly rare and historical records on Sarawak. Currently, there are about 30 staff working to preserve valuable Government and Sarawakiana materials here.
The soon-to-be-available branch under Pustaka’s umbrella is Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu. Situated at Sungai Merah, which is about 7km from the city centre, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu will be serving the Central Region of Sarawak, with up-to-date knowledge facilities and infrastructures. Themed ‘Educate Yourself’ and with concept of a lifestyle library, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu is a modern library with a unique interior design and a calming green garden surrounding it – a feature Pustaka Negeri Sarawak is well known for. The enjoyable and comfortable atmosphere will make Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu the first choice for lifelong learning. Pustaka Negeri Sarawak Sibu is expected to open sometime at the end of this year.
With the ever growing need to stay relevant in the electronic era, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak is constantly promoting reading culture and lifelong learning through programmes like Reading Seeds and the digitalisation of its information services. There is wide variety of digital books available for free online for Pustaka Negeri Sarawak members. Its Online Public Access Catalogue offers a single gateway access to pretty much everything, including children’s books, exam preparation books for TOEFL and IELTS, science books and many more. The public can also gain free access to Pressreader, an all-you-can-read digital newsstand with thousands of famous newspapers and magazines from all around the world. So, be sure to register yourself as a member of Pustaka Negeri Sarawak so that you can make use of this #stayhome MCO period to read free books and magazines from Pustaka Negeri Sarawak!
Free Digital Literacy E-Learning workshop this #MCO
In collaboration with Sarawak Multimedia Authority, Pustaka Negeri Sarawak is rolling out a Digital Literacy (Modul PANDei) eLearning workshop for free throughout the #MCO period. The modules offered for the public include: