Kenya National Library Service had the privilege of being represented in the above named Convention that took Place at Mahe Island, Seychelles. The convention brought together 32 library innovators and 8 mentors from all over the world. Mary Kinyanjui the Librarian-in-Charge of Kibera Branch represented knls who is part of the mentorship team. She got the appointment as a result of the excellent works she has done in mentoring the young people in Kibera, organizing programs that enable them to interact and grow each other as well as helping in addressing some of the challenges they face in their low income households.

The convention involved discussions on a number of issues such as the review of the last convening, challenges of leadership, change management, conflict resolution, community engagement, fostering team work and guiding projects. The director of Global Libraries Initiative Deborah Jacobs emphasized the need for all parties to work together, be innovative and support each other in exploring new ideas and experimenting new services. She equally informed the participants that the INELI program was being implemented very well and was making significant contributions in transforming libraries. The emphasis was on how public libraries relate to the development agenda (National Development Plan, UN Agenda 2030 and AU Agenda 2063) and how they can best support the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. To attain this goal, INELI came up with three primary goals which include;

  • Goal 1: Create an international pool of future library leaders to build and sustain public libraries throughout the world.
  • Goal 2: Explore or address global library issues that have the potential to stimulate, expand or improve public library service
  • Goal 3: Enhance the leadership skills of new professionals from a variety of countries to enable them redefine public libraries for the future to meet the unique needs of the people in their respective countries.

It was a wonderful opportunity for the mentors to finally meet ‘one-on-one’ with their mentees, share about their successes, challenges and map out the way forward. The convention ended with a visit to the Seychelles National Library which is a big modern library.