Today the National Library of Chuvashia is a complex of specialized departments, book depositories, halls for servicing readers, organizing events, recreating and communicating equipped with modern facilities. The library is gradually being transformed from the institution where the printed publications are stored and issued into a center for electronic information and culture.
This was facilitated by the reconstruction of the main library building. It allowed to take into account all modern requirements for libraries in terms of technical equipment: the library space was redesigned to have more access to documents, and the service area was enlarged. Elevators, ramps, the software complex “Orion” providing pass control, safety of the building and preservation of documents create a comfortable and safe environment for visitors and staff.
Specialized rooms with access to digital resources have been opened: Electronic Reading Room, Public Centre for Law Information, a training center, an assembly and conference halls for organizing and conducting lectures, seminars, video presentations, and online conferences.
In the departments working with visitors automated system of book order and circulation was introduced. It allows to monitor the location of the book, track electronic orders, and obtain statistical data. A program-controlled transport system (telelift) for targeted delivery of documents was installed.
Access to electronic resources is provided through a system of virtual rooms. The portal “Cultural heritage of Chuvashia” (http://nasledie.nbchr.ru/) integrates digital information resources of libraries, museums, archives and scientific institutions, containing unique materials on the history and culture of the republic and the Chuvash. The national electronic library placed on the library’s website (http://www.nbchr.ru) becomes a popular information resource. The library holds free courses for library visitors where they can learn basic skills of computer work with office and library programs and the Internet.
Preservation of the language, culture of the people and the monuments of the Chuvash writing, provision of access to information about the region, unification of the Chuvash population settled throughout Russia with the help of the book are priority fields of activities of the main library of the republic.
The local history collection of the library is the most complete collection of documents on natural, resource, cultural, historical, scientific, technical, socio-economic development of the Chuvash Republic published both in the republic and beyond its borders in different languages. The collection contains over 42 thousand documents: books, periodicals, electronic documents, microfilms. The particularly precious books are rare local history books printed since 1820: first Chuvash ABC-books, “Holy Gospel…” in the Chuvash language (1820), “Notes about the Chuvash and the Cheremis” by A. Fuks (1840), etc. The subject of pride is the collection “Ayginiana”, books by a people’s poet of Chuvashia G. N. Aygi published in 50 countries in 40 languages of the world.
The National Library fulfills its cultural and educational mission and unites the efforts of scientific and cultural institutions, creative unions, public organizations in promoting reading. Exhibitions and presentations, evenings and conferences, competitions and festivals held in the library, large-scale cultural events are becoming notable events in the life of the republic.
The National Library is a member of the Russian Library Association (RLA), the Coalition of Regional Library Consortia (ARBIKON). The Library participates in the implementation of the National Program for Preservation of Library Collections of the Russian Federation in a number of key areas: creation of a depositary local history collection, preservation of documents in the process of their use and their safety.
On the basis of the library the regional centers have been formed: working with book monuments; of cataloging; of conservation and restoration; of distribution and maintenance of ABIS “IRBIS 64/32”. The Library organizes work on the retrospective conversion of traditional catalogs, corporate analytical description of local periodicals, forms a consolidated catalog of libraries of Chuvashia.
As a methodical and coordinating center for more than 500 municipal libraries in the region, The Library conducts information technology trainings for specialists of cultural institutions.
The Library carefully preserves its traditions. Among its main strategic tasks is the work with users online. Opening a new page of its history, the main library of the republic counts on the help and support of its regular visitors and the society who have been, are and will be its support and hope.