Qatar National Library receives over 677,000 book lovers this year

The love for reading and access to information has grown significantly in Qatar which is evident from the increasing number of members and borrowers at the Qatar National Library (QNL). 

According to QNL’s latest newsletter,  710,012 books were borrowed in 2019 and the library received 37,467 new members. 

A total of 677,023 visitors came to the library in 2019,  including several VIP guests such as João Lourenço, President of Angola; Armen Sarkissian, President of Armenia and Amina Jane Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations. 

The library’s use of online resources is highly valued by users. Qatar Digital Library received over 1.76 million views. It makes available more than 1.5 million pages of historical records on Qatar and the Gulf, which were previously housed in the British Library, and thanks to a partnership agreement between the two libraries, are now being used by scholars and students from anywhere in the world. 

QNL is redefining what a library should be in the 21st century by hosting a  variety of events, activities and classes for the community. The Library has given the community access to a wealth of resources, including books, journals, electronic resources, and a full programme of over 806 curated events in 2019, including the iconic Jaipur Literature Festival in Doha, Qatar’s first international literature festival. The Library has held 422 tours including of the general Library and Heritage Library for 3,608 participants.  

Since its inception, QNL has promoted an open-door policy for all the residents of Qatar. Along with programmes for researchers and academics, the library hosts various additional activities that target all age groups, ranging from toddlers to senior citizens, regardless of their backgrounds.

The library initially opened its doors to the public in November 2017 for an experimental period. Since then to April 2018  the Library welcomed more than 200,000 visitors and held hundreds of events for visitors of all ages, ranging from early literacy programs for children to research workshops. 

Within the first year since the official, the iconic Library building welcomed 738,636 visitors. With more than one million books borrowed since its opening, the Library registered 139,551 new members. 

The library’s collection includes one million books in English, Arabic, and other languages, complemented by a dedicated Children’s Library and Young Adults collection. The QNL Heritage Library collection includes rare and valuable items related to Arab and Islamic civilization. Its collection has more than 50,000 items, including manuscripts, early printed books, historical maps, globes, photographs, and scientific instruments. 

As seen on Peninsula Qatar  Image Credits Peninsula Qatar