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Neighborhood book club is no ordinary library

June 7, 2012 9:24am
On Balagtas Street in Barangay La Paz, Makati, one man has turned his house into a 24-hour public library, a dream come true for neighborhood bibliophiles. 
 
At Hernando Guanlao's Reading Club 2000, books of all shapes, sizes and subjects cover almost every available space. From the stairs to the sidewalk, Guanlao's collection is never-ending.

Libraries don't even need a building if one considers this outdoor haven for bibliophiles located in a working-class neighborhood. Emerald Ridao
 
Although it may seem that everything can be found online, there's nothing quite like the pleasure of turning pages. While many people prefer to use search engines and ebooks, there are still some who like to spend hours browsing shelves. For such people, libraries are treasure troves.
 
The Reading Club 2000 is no ordinary book club. The only rule is, there are no rules. "Gustong iuwi, hiramin, huwag nang ibalik, wala tayong pinagbabawal dito," Guanlao said in a report on GMA News’ Saksi on June 7.


 
Since the library was established in 2000, Guanlao has provided the neighborhood with an endless supply of books.

This is especially good for students like Rachel Elegino. "’Yung mga walang libro sa bahay, puwede silang humiram dito ng libro," Elegino said in the report.
 
Borrowing books isn't the only thing that's allowed. According to Guanlao, readers may even keep the books they love. But regulars usually choose to return the books, so that others may also benefit. 
 
Inspired by Guanlao's generosity, some parents like Viviel Flores also pitch in by contributing their used books to the neighborhood library.
 
"At least ‘yung hindi na po gagamitin ng mga anak ko, mapapakinabangan naman ng ibang bata, ‘yung mga susunod na henerasyon," Flores said in the report. –Carmela G. Lapeña/KG, GMA News

The Reading Club 2000 is at 1454 Balagtas St., Barangay La Paz, Makati City. For inquiries, call 0915-7291526 or e-mail readingclub2000@yahoo.com.
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