We are once again watching how quickly Ukrainian libraries adapt to functioning in the conditions of a devastating war. And as every difficult test, in the end, leads to the development of book collections and the growth of reading among the population.
Therefore, we announce the start of the "Book Grants for Libraries of Ukraine" competition, which is implemented jointly Ukrainian Publishers & Booksellers Association,Library Country Charitable Foundation Charitable Foundation of Kharkiv community "Toloka" with the financial support of writers and booksellers Helping Ukrainian Books and Booksellers (Caroline Fourche, Mitchell Kaplan, Christopher Merrill, Askold Melnychuk and Jane Anroux), the Canadian-Ukrainian Foundation and the Ukrainian National Association of Quebec, the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels https://helpukrainianbooks.org
The goal of this initiative is to provide the most active public libraries of Ukraine with the opportunity to receive charitable assistance in the form of books.
Together we work for victory and make every effort to enable libraries to contribute to the history of our country.
PROJECT RESULTS OF THE I TOUR
According to previously reached agreements, the "UPBA" received 10,000 USD from the organization Helping Ukrainian Books and Booksellers and 15,200 USD from the Ukrainian National Association of Quebec. The total amount was 25.2 thousand US dollars, which, when converted at the rate of the National Bank of Ukraine at the time of receiving the aid, equaled 900 thousand hryvnias.
The entire amount was deposited into the accounts of the Charitable Organization "Kharkiv Community Charitable Fund "Toloka" on the basis of the partnership agreement with UPBA.
With the consent of the donors, the funds sent were to be used for the purchase of books from domestic publishers for Ukrainian libraries, the collections of which were damaged or lost as a result of the temporary occupation of the territories of Ukraine by the troops of the Russian aggressor or suffered as a result of hostilities and which are located in territories under the control of the Ukrainian authorities and under very limited book availability funds were supposed to serve a large number of internally displaced persons who left the occupied territories and the war zone.
In connection with the effect of the special Decree of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No. 590, by which libraries were forbidden to use funds, regardless of their origin, for the purchase of books under martial law conditions, the UAPB was forced to develop a separate program for the use of donated charitable funds for purchases of books, which was called "Book grants for libraries".
Another partner of the UPBA in the implementation of this project was the Charity Foundation "Library Country", which constantly supports communications with libraries.
The program we developed included several stages, namely:
— holding a competition of libraries and selecting from them those that most need help with books;
— conducting a competition of potential book suppliers for the winning libraries;
— the selection by the winning libraries from the offers of suppliers of sets (hereinafter referred to as packages) of books that they like best;
— signing of contracts by the "Toloka" Charitable Foundation with book suppliers, the package offers of which were chosen by the winning libraries;
— signing of contracts by the "Toloka" Charitable Foundation with the winning libraries regarding the transfer of book packages chosen by them and receipt of acts of acceptance and transfer of these books from them;
— after delivery by the suppliers to the libraries of the books chosen by them, which is confirmed by acts of acceptance and transfer, payment from the accounts of "Toloka" to the suppliers for the books delivered by them.
After studying the situation and discussing it at a meeting of the Supervisory Board of the UPBA, it was decided to consider the optimal amount of assistance to each of the selected libraries to be 30 thousand hryvnias, which is enough, taking into account the current average price of books in Ukraine, to purchase at least 90 books .
At the first stage of the program's implementation, after a wide announcement of its start in all available information sources, we received applications from 975 libraries in need of assistance, with a letter of motivation explaining why they needed this assistance.
After careful study of all received applications by the members of the Supervisory Board of the UPBA, experts of the "Library Country", as well as the heads of the National Library named after Yaroslav Mudryy, the National Library of Ukraine for Children and the State Library of Ukraine for Youth, 30 libraries were identified, which, in their opinion experts, most need help with books.
In the second stage of the program, 20 book supplier organizations and enterprises participated, which offered 38 packages of books for selection by 30 winning libraries.
During the third stage, the winning libraries made their selections and informed us about which package they chose. We, in turn, informed the suppliers about this.
After receiving confirmation from the suppliers about their readiness to send the selected packages to the winning libraries of the "Toloka", contracts were signed with the suppliers regarding payment for the supply of books by them after receiving notifications from the libraries and acts of acceptance and transfer about the delivery of the ordered books to them.
After receiving the order, each of the libraries posted information about it on their websites and social networks, emphasizing the fact that they were able to get the books only thanks to the charitable financial assistance of the organization Helping Ukrainian Books and Booksellers and the Canadian-Ukrainian Foundation and the Ukrainian National Association union of Quebec.
In addition, on each book delivered to the libraries, a sticker is affixed indicating that the payment was made with the funds of the provided charitable assistance.
As of July 10, 2023, the first stage of the "Book Grants for Libraries" program has been completed. Each of the 30 libraries received books worth 30,000 hryvnias, making a total of 900,000 hryvnias.
In total, libraries received 3,207 books, as opposed to the expected 2,700.
We would like to note that thanks to the provided funds, not only the libraries received books, but also the publishers who prepared the books chosen by the libraries, and the suppliers were financially supported in this difficult time for Ukraine.
We express our deep respect and sincere gratitude to American and Canadian benefactors for their charitable assistance, as well as hope for the possibility of continuing the Book Grants for Libraries program in the near future thanks to the support of our foreign colleagues and partners.