Another Latvian parish is being destroyed quickly and quietly. The school and the library are planned to be closed in Vilkene

Another Latvian parish is being destroyed quickly and quietly. The school and the library are planned to be closed in Vilkene
Another Latvian parish is being destroyed quickly and quietly. The school and the library are planned to be closed in Vilkene
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We received a message from a resident of Vilkene Parish, Limbažu County, who is really worried about the future of his parish. The liquidation of the library and the elementary school of Baumani Kārlis Vilkenes is planned. Unfortunately, closing schools and libraries in regions has very quick consequences – by destroying these basic places, parishes are basically “written off”.

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A council meeting has been called on April 25, during which the deputies will have to make a decisive decision, meanwhile the residents of Vilkene parish have planned a picket from 9:30 a.m. to at least express their opinion.

The resident, who wished to remain anonymous, says: “On April 19, a meeting of the joint committee of Limbažu district was already held, to which two issues, which have not yet been discussed in society to any extent, were addressed. One is about the Baumaņi Kārlis elementary school, and the other is about the liquidation of seven county libraries.

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The appetite is great. Leaving residents not even book distribution points, nothing, takes away a significant part of local people’s daily life. Yes, these libraries are not widely visited because they are located in the outskirts, but that is where they are so needed. They have existed there for 40 years and more.

My pain is precisely the parish of Vilkene, because the Ķirbizu Forest Museum was recently liquidated near us, now it’s the turn of the school and the library. What will be left here? Everyone understands that if a school is abolished somewhere, that place gradually dies out.

We have a wonderful primary school, in which a lot has been invested, equipped infrastructure, there is a sports hall. Initially, it was proposed to add the school to Limbažu Secondary School, but to leave it as a place of education. Well, this option is no longer considered. The principal has not received any explanations, only a disclaimer that the school is not sustainable.”

The resident also knows to say that the opinion of the Latvian Library Council was not received regarding the closing of libraries, as it should be according to the Library Law. The application has been submitted, but there is no opinion, meanwhile a decision is already planned at the council meeting. That’s why people picket, because they care about the future of their parish.

LA.LV also got in touch with Gita Kārnupi, the manager of the Pāle and Vilķene parish service centers. She is also worried about the future.
“Tomorrow there is a council meeting where a decision will be made. This is one of the points of building a common network of libraries, resulting from municipal funding.”

Gita perfectly knows the importance of libraries and schools in the lives of local people: “Vitrupe residents need a library, because it is the only institution in this settlement – a place where residents can gather. The library has long ceased to be just a point of issue of books, it fulfills many more functions – it provides an opportunity to access a computer and the Internet, there are still enough people who do not have such opportunities at home or do not have the skills to handle them. Vitrupe library has always invited residents to events. One of the biggest events is the Lilac Festival, which gathers around 100 people every year. A library that people need should not be closed. The nearest library for residents of Vitrupe is in the center of Viċkenes, 7 km from Vitrupe. Not all people can get to it due to their health condition. By closing the institutions, the quality of life for the residents of Vilkene Parish will definitely deteriorate. The exodus of the population from the countryside will be deliberately encouraged.”

Gita is also anxiously waiting for tomorrow’s meeting, she has a feeling that this decision will probably be made, but there is still hope that the deputies will change their minds. The Ministry of Culture has already paid attention to the topic and opposes that the municipality makes a decision before the opinion of the Latvian Library Council on each library.

There are currently around 1,200 people in the parish. Is it really not enough to count with this opinion?

Via Kilblock also addresses this issue on her Facebook account:

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The article is in Latvian

Tags: Latvian parish destroyed quickly quietly school library planned closed Vilkene

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