Dubai: The Library of Alexandria, one of the most significant cultural monuments in the Arab world, has introduced the Arab Reading Challenge (ARC) wing, after a donation of 150,000 books in various genres including fiction, history, science and more. The ARC falls under the umbrella of the Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives (MBRGI).
Saeed Al Eter, assistant secretary-general of MBRGI, said since its launch two years ago, the ARC has successfully become the largest knowledge project in the Arab world, collaborating with many important cultural institutions across the region.
“The initiative seeks to expand its reach beyond students and schools, and to engage dynamically and directly with cultural and educational institutions in local communities across various countries.”
He continued, “The MBRGI’s partnership with the Library of Alexandria translates the ARC’s vision to actively participate in reigniting the development process in the Arab world through knowledge, culture and intellectualism.”
He said that it would also be the first time that school students will be allowed to borrow books from the library, in order to provide them with quality reading material, and to ingrain in them the habit of reading daily.
The signing of the agreement was attended by ARC secretary-general Dr Najla Al Shamsi, and director of Public Relations and International Contacts at the Library of Alexandria Dr Sherif Riad, on behalf of the library directors Dr Mustafa Al Faki and Marwa Al Gharabawy.
Under the agreement, the Library of Alexandria committed to making the books available to all schools participating in the ARC in Egypt, including sending mobile buses to reach schools that do not have access to the library, as well as coordinating school trips to bring students to the library itself.
The Arab Reading Challenge was launched by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in September 2015, and is the largest pan-Arab project dedicated to encouraging students to read in Arabic.