Hon. Sharie de Castro, Minister for Education officially opened Library Week 2024 on Monday with a written statement to the public. This year’s theme is “Libraries: Moving full STEAM Upstream,” highlighting the integral role libraries play in advancing science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics (STEAM).

In a statement released Minister de Castro emphasized the significance of Library Week coinciding with World Book and Copyright Day on April 23rd, a globally recognized day promoting reading and intellectual property rights. 

“Throughout Library Week, we have set ambitious objectives to further engage our community with the wealth of resources available through our public libraries,” said Minister de Castro. “We aim to promote extensive eBook collections patrons can access via the Libby app, encourage greater library card registrations territory-wide, boost participation in diverse library programs and services, and expand overall membership.”

A highlight will be the introduction of eBook collections to students at Willard Wheatley and Francis Lettsome Primary Schools to enrich digital learning experiences. The week’s schedule includes science experiments, arts and crafts, storytelling, readings by local authors, and the “Dads Reach Out & Read Programme” organized with the BVI Reading Council on April 27th.

Minister de Castro added, “Libraries are not just repositories of books, but community hubs sparking curiosity, intellectual growth and innovation. This Library Week, we encourage everyone to experience these valuable resources first-hand.”

The Education Minister thanked dedicated library staff and partners for organizing engaging activities celebrating “the power of knowledge and the joy of reading” while embracing STEAM educational principles.

“Let us celebrate Library Week 2024 and make it a resounding success for reading, learning and community engagement across the Virgin Islands,” Minister de Castro stated.