Since Hurricane Ivan destroyed the roof and furniture of the Bodden Town Library, many residents and visitors are asking why after two years it has not been repaired.
That question I can’t answer. But since a year ago I have passed those questions on to Mr. Osbourne Bodden, Mr. Anthony Eden and recently Mr. Joel Francis.
Mr. Bodden informed me about a year ago that a temporary classroom was ordered and it would be used for a temporary library and consideration was in process to place it in the yard space of the town hall until the other library was completed.
I also spoke with Mr. Joel Francis who said the library would not be ready until about November 2006.
I served as librarian from it was opened in 2000 until it was closed by Hurricane Ivan in 2004. Of course Bodden Town Public Library was the top of the best with about 200 members, which included children.
The Bodden Town library was a great asset to the district, which not only served its patrons but is sadly missed for its up-to-date magazines, which were enjoyed by the shut-ins, prison, police station and health centre, visitors and out of town residents.
They would publicly express the friendly environment up-to-date island information and good parking.
Those who think that a library is a place only to borrow books are misinformed.
Libraries safeguard our freedom and keep democracy healthy. Bodden Town library was available to inform its patrons by providing access to information. That information enabled us to make decisions necessary to govern ourselves.
Our public libraries are the only institution of the Cayman society whose purpose is to guard against the tyrannies of ignorance and conformity. Its existence indicates the extent to which a democratic society values knowledge, truth, justice, books and culture.
Libraries break down boundaries by providing free family literacy for low-literate, illiterate and non-English speaking people.
The library valued the individual and opened its doors for independent thinking without pre-judgement.
At the library everyone became a child as we stimulated curiosity.
Each child who visited the library often displayed an open mind and a personal responsibility by the joy of holding a library card.
The Bodden Town Library is sadly missed by its patrons.
It offered guaranteed service; training made families friendlier; parenting material; after school activities; homework station; summer reading programmes; and always ready to adapt to new challenges.
The library created a physical reaction of peace, respect, humility and honour that opened the mind with a near spiritual pleasure. But why? It is because at the library we are answerable to no one. Alone with our private thoughts, fantasies and hopes; free to nourish what is most precious to us with the silent companionship of those we do not know.
I do trust that the Ministry that is responsible along with the representatives of the Bodden Town district will consider my information as food for thought and open the Bodden Town library very soon even if it’s a temporary classroom as Mr. Osbourne Bodden stated and find someone who can be quite informative and knowledgeable to continue this task. I have every trust that those responsible will find someone to get it going.