Welcome to National Library Week, an annual event that exemplifies the daily contributions our nation’s libraries and librarians give everyday. As a librarian, I everyday see the benefits and the resources that libraries provide to their communities. And especially now, with the world the way it is, we need libraries more than ever. The theme for this year is “Libraries Transform”. When the world changes, we change right along with it. We “transform” to meet our patrons’ needs. We are there for you and right now, we need you to be there for us. We are under threat and what better way to show the importance of libraries with a week of celebrating them. Here are some ways you help celebrate this week:
No Fake News – Rest assured, you will not find any fake news at libraries. We make sure all the information we provide is accurate and up to date. Take a look at all the databases that libraries subscribe to. They have reliable sources and make sure you are kept in the know.
Sign Up For a Library Card – Show your support of the continue use of libraries by signing up for a library card. You’ll be surprised at the many benefits you get with a library card!
Take advantage of the free – Everything in the library is free! Free books, free DVDs (if libraries circulate them), free music…you borrow for a length of time and you can return them to get more items or extend your loan period. What better way to celebrate libraries than to actually use their collection.
Attend a library program – Participate in library programs that are tirelessly created by experienced librarians. These programs meet communities’needs and again, they are absolutely for free! Library programs range from preschool story time to gaming programs. It also gives the opportunity for communities to come together, especially for book clubs and writing circles. There is no better way to show how important the library is in your life.
Volunteer at Your Library – Advocate for the continue use of libraries by volunteering at your local one! Libraries need help and library workers can feel overworked, so volunteer work would be more than helpful. It shows community strength and support for libraries, especially when you see local residents helping out.
Encourage the Young to Use the Library – There have been countless studies where early reading has proved beneficial to developing minds. In order for the continue existence of libraries, children and teens need to be encouraged to use the library. They need to know that yes, it is a place of learning, but also a place of fun and creativity. It will work better for them in the future.
Advocate For Libraries – Today was designated by the ALA (American Libraries Association) as Take Action For Libraries Day. With a president threatening to cut funding to the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), we need the communities’ support more than ever. As the ALA stated in press release:
During Take Action for Libraries Day, the ALA encourages librarians, library workers and patrons to advocate for full funding of IMLS which will safeguard federal funding for our nation’s libraries. Our hope is that advocates will fight for libraries by making at least five calls to their legislators to ask for full support of IMLS funding.”
We need to safeguard our collections and advocacy for libraries is a great way to start.
Celebrating libraries shouldn’t just be one week, it should be an everyday occurrence. However, let us take this week to recognize the importance of these institutions and the invaluable resources they provide to communities everyday.