In 2017, there were only two mobile libraries in Poland – in Opole and in Warsaw. In the past, there were attempts to introduce library buses in Poland. This has been the case since the 1970s, but library buses have not caught on.
In 2019 we went to Hannover for IFBK and have looked at the best solutions. We came back to Poland and did three things.
First of all, we launched our own bibliobus in Gostyń.
Secondly, we made contacts with other libraries that want to have library buses.
Thirdly, we got interested important institutions in the subject: The Polish Book Institute, The National Library and The Ministry of Culture and National Heritage.
We made a mini library in our library bus. We have books, movies, video games, cinema, newspapers, we do educational and cultural activities for children. We reach 21 villages and two housing estates in the city each week. We have a financial support from The Polish Book Institute – as a result, we have been able to realise over 200 cultural activities for children in the years 2020-2023. We have become an example for other libraries in Poland. Due to this two new bibliobuses modeled on ours were created. These are Kobylnica near Słupsk in Pomerania and Ustrzyki Dolne near the border with Ukraine. Another about 10 libraries are interested in introducing library buses. In order to encourage city and country authorities to allocate money for library buses, we show how effective library buses are. We conducted efficiency studies and accurate statistics.
We estimate that in Poland there is a need for about 40 bibliobuses in the next few years.
Przemysław Pawlak – Director of the Public Library in Gostyń; President of The Polish Association of Mobile Libraries; historian and cultural manager; creator of the first modern library bus in Poland; member of the Program Council of “Polish Television” in Poznań.
He created a media library and comics studio in Gostyń, as well as the largest festival of historical crime literature in Poland. He specializes in raising funds for cultural projects.