ANKARA, Turkey: Turkish garbage collectors have set up a public library in the capital city by collecting discarded books.
The library is full of books that were originally destined to go into the landfill sites.
The workers have collected the book kept in the library from the garbage. The library is located in the Çankaya district of Ankara.
After the setting up of the library last year, people are now donating books directly to the library, rather than throwing them away.
The library was originally created for the use of the employees, friends and family but, as it grew in size, the library was officially opened to the public in September last year.
“We started to discuss the idea of creating a library from these books. And when everyone supported it, this project happened,” said Çankaya Mayor Alper Tasdelen, whose local government spearheaded the opening of the library.
The library now has over 6,000 fiction and non-fiction books and includes a children’s section, an area dedicated to scientific research books, and a number of English and French language books for those who are bilingual.
The library building itself used to be a brick factory and is located at the sanitation department HQ. The building featured long corridors and an aged brick facade and transformed perfectly into a library.
Books can be withdrawn for two weeks at a time, with an extension available if required. The library’s collection has now become so vast that it loans many of the books to schools, educational programs, and even prisons.
“Village schoolteachers from all over Turkey are requesting books,” Tasdelen said. The library has also created new job opportunities as it requires a full-time staff to run and support it.
The library has proven to be a huge hit with the community. Children of the employees often enjoy reading there and local school children visit to study. Local cyclists who pedal through the nearby valley often take a break there and enjoy the lounge area and chess boards.