The Bibliotherapy Department of the Silesian Library located at ul. Ligonia 7 in Katowice acts as a teachers’ training centre for municipal libraries of the Silesian Voivodeship in the field of reading for the sick and disabled and bibliotherapy. It works to provide disabled people with equal opportunities in access to information and cultural integration. In the reading room, it provides materials on the subject of people at risk of social exclusion.
As part of its activities, the branch carries out a number of projects addressed towards different groups. The common theme of the meetings is counteracting an audience’s exclusion from access to culture. They are attended by people with disabilities, schoolchildren, seniors and prisoners. Projects in progress:
- Silesian Library Seminar (educational workshops for seniors),
- Therapeutic meetings for charges of occupational therapy workshops and social welfare homes,
- Bibliotherapy workshops and library lessons for primary school children.
Meetings for organised groups – charges of occupational therapy workshops, social welfare homes or associations – are also held here. Bibliotherapy and/or art therapy activities encourage creative endeavours and in-depth, reflective reading of therapeutic texts. Through various stimuli, they support the development and therapy of participants.
For information on the department’s ongoing educational tasks, see the Działalność edukacyjna tab.
The many activities undertaken by the Bibliotherapy Department include:
- Initiating a nationwide database of multimedia presentations with audio description. The database is the result of training workshops for librarians from the Silesian Voivodeship as part of the “Zilustruj mi słowem świat” [“Draw me the world with words”] co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. The database allows institutions involved in the dissemination of culture to also organise meetings for the blind and visually impaired, and thus expand the cultural offer aimed at people at risk of social exclusion Audio Description Database.
- Providing exhibition space, where works of representatives of groups at risk of social exclusion are exhibited. This is a place of for many artists to début, providing them with the opportunity to present their works to a wide audience. Since 1988, the “Little Gallery” has been continuously promoting the work of disabled artists, among others.
- Cooperation under an agreement between the Silesian Library in Katowice and a number of correctional facilities operating in the Silesian Voivodeship aimed at carrying out cultural and educational activities by library staff, with a particular emphasis on promoting books and reading. The agreement includes a series of lectures of the “Culture Academy” and a Discussion Book Club.
- Organisation of the annual Easter Fair of Handicrafts of People with Disabilities, during which objects made by charges of occupational therapy workshops and social welfare homes are presented. The event aims to promote the creativity of people with disabilities and their integration into the community.
- Conducting workshop meetings that provide opportunities to create and test new forms of therapy based on the group’s experience. “FORMA-T” is the name of a programme that uses art therapy to develop the participants’ personalities. Classes are held periodically – twice a week (Tuesday, Wednesday).
Registration by phone or e-mail is required for all workshops conducted in the Bibliotherapy Department of the Silesian Library.