The Community Health Cell Library and Information Centre (CLIC) is open to all though it primarily services the needs of community Health activists and professionals and those involved in Community Health and Development Action. The reading materials too are select in subject coverage and number. The mode of service is also unconventional and specialized in its nature. It is essentially a service Library giving free service.
Books are kept on open shelves and any user can handle them directly. This increases the change of every user getting exactly what he / she wants. Visitors are received and guided / helped in the choice of information. The library is kept open between 9.30 a m to 5.30 pm from Monday to Friday. On Saturdays visitors need to fix prior appointment before visiting the library.
Selection of Books and Other Non Book Materials
Books are chosen from among the books received on approval basis from the local book sellers. (Here we have the advantage of going though the content of the publications and lists of useful materials are made. Journals and Newsletters received in the library are scanned for announcements of new publications and lists of useful materials are made. Local bookshops are visited once in three months to select interesting books.
Recommendations from team members are also noted. Accumulated lists are discussed at convenient intervals (once in a month) at Library Pool Meetings. A final list of publications and other materials to be bought is made by the library staff for further action. A file is maintained for this purpose.
Library Pool is informed of the total finance available and the proportion in which it is allocated to different sections of publications including non-book materials i.c., Books / Journals / Audios, Videos, Slides and other Health Education materials. Books and other material selected are ordered from the relevant publishers / book sellers / organizations. Orders are sent out once in a month i.e., on the first working day of every month.
A separate list of books / journals newsletters that can be got gratis is also made and the list is scrutinized by the Library Pool before they are requested. The Library makes use of the inter-library loan system for books and journals on occasional demand.
For the most of journals advance payment is required. Hence journals subscriptions are made in the month of October / November so that there is no interruption in supply of journals. Separate files are maintained for purchase of journals/audio-visual materials. Index cards with payment details are maintained for all the journals and newsletters subscribed to.
Bills are sent to the Accounts Section after the books / audio visual materials are received and taken into stock in the Library. A separate accounts register is maintained in the Library for purchase of books, journals, audio visual materials, health education materials etc.
Books and other materials once purchased are given a serial number and entered in the Accession Register. Each book is also given a call number and class number. A modified version of the Voluntary Health Association of India (VHAI) Calssification Scheme which is very simple to follow, is used.
Finally, pasting of due-date slips and card pockets and stamping of the library seal on back of coverage, page no-21, 31, 51, 101 and 151 is done. Book cards are written and put in the pockets, before display.
Books purchased are displayed for a period of fifteen days. Journals and Newsletters of the current year are displayed on the display racks. Two display racks are available in the new training hall and usually display CHC publications and reports. When special meetings or training sessions around specific themes are to be organized, attempts are made to display a selection of literature on those themes.
Shelving / Arrangement
Books and Resource materials are arranged in a classified sequence. In this scheme, all the subjects are alphabetically arranged by their names. Copies of the classification scheme followed are available in the themes. Journals and newsletters are arranged alphabetically by their title.
Reports are arranged in Boxes. Pamphlets received from other NGOs are arranged by name of States / Regions in pamphlet boxes. A list is maintained in the library.
Issue / Lending Policy
A register is maintained for users. A library card and preliminary registration from system is being introduced this year. All materials taken out of the library are entered in the register in their name, organization, address, with contact phone number is noted down. Books are issued for a period of 15 days and journals / newsletters for a period of one week. The borrower is eligible to borrow three books / two journals at a time. No resource file is lent out. The user is asked to mention the date of return in case he / she needs the materials for a longer period.
Reminder letters to return the materials borrowed are sent to users after a grace period of 5 days. CHC team members can borrow more then two books / journals with permission of the coordinator, these should be return within a fortnight. Audio-visual, training materials, posters ae also issued for a period of 5 days with permission of the coordinator.
Shelf rectification is done once in a week to check misplacement of the reading materials.
Reference collection consists of:
- Books that are rare and not easily available
- Books that are frequently used in the library
- Books that need to the looked up only for a few minutes at a time
(These cannot be borrowed out except by the CHC staff)
Books in regional languages are maintained in a separate rack for easy reference.
Worn out and out of date books are weeded out following a resolution passed by the Library Committee duplicate issues of journals and newsletters are given to other users (including staff from CHC).
Stock verification will be done according to the Library Committee decision, but atleast once in two years.
Books / journals / Audio-visual materials etc: Persons responsible for the loss should replace the materials or pay one and a half times the cost of lost materials (in order to meet the expenses involved in replacing the materials).
The library committee will consist of the Secretary, one Executive Member, one regular user, the Librarian and one SOCHARA team member. Depending on the needs, other members can be co-opted by the committee.