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Reports for "Ex Libris -- New Hope for an Ancient Society"

ECOLOGIA Board Member Paul Soler-Sala visited the Varketili library project while in Georgia, seven months after it was funded. He did interviews, took photographs, and wrote this report for the Virtual Foundation:

I met with Gogi Zamukashvili, Director of Society Varketili, on the evening of March 16, 1999, at the Society Varketili offices which are located in a former regional nursery school in the Varketili district of Tbilisi. Society Varketili was created in 1995 to provide the citizens of the Varketili district of Tbilisi, Georgia, with a grassroots social support network, in lieu of the collapse of any discernible government support for even the most basic public health needs.

In addition to the specific projects carried out by the Society, Gogi indicated that the motivational benefits generated from the positive examples of the Society's successful projects to date coupled with the pride from numerous volunteers from the community, have also been a noteworthy accomplishment of the organization's efforts. Such efforts seem especially significant in light of the dire conditions of the last ten years, including regional secession, civil war, and economic disarray. The library/reading room is only one of several Society Varketili projects housed in the nursery school building. These projects function both independently and as part of a larger, multi-faceted and organized community effort of the Society Varketili.

a) How has the library project helped the community?

b) How do individuals in the community use the library?

c) What exactly has changed as a result of the Virtual Foundation grant?

d) Does the fact that the grant came from a foreign donor have any signficance?

e) Has there been any communication with the donor?

Final Report from "Varketili"

On August 11, 1998, Horizonti, a Virtual Foundation Consortium Member, transferred the sum of $981.90 to the Society "Varketili" for the purpose of funding the "Ex Libris: New Hope for an Ancient Society" Virtual Foundation project. The library, which was open from 11 until 18 o'clock, spent the money donated through the Virtual Foundation to: