THE PANDEMIC AND THE LIBRARIES
The COVID-19 pandemic impacts every product sector, including libraries. In fact, it hit librarians and their communities in a unique way. Public libraries are an important public resource, especially for vulnerable populations who looking for employment assistance, web and PC access; in some cases, libraries even provide child care services.
Beyond all of these crucial public services available at libraries, libraries are also fundamentally “places of learning and connection for all ages and backgrounds” as stated by ALA President Wanda Kay Brown. The pandemic’s impact on libraries, consequently put these essential services and enrichment opportunities in jeopardy.
HOW WERE THE PUBLIC LIBRARIES AFFECTED BY THE PANDEMIC?
The COVID-19 pandemic made it more difficult for libraries to render all of these services. Libraries have had to close their physical buildings and start delivering their services and resources online. They pivoted from managing broad in-person services and programs on-site to rapidly setting up virtual talks and classes, and contact-less pickup.
STRATEGIC LESSONS LEARNED DURING THE PANDEMIC
For libraries, 2020 was year of disorder and disruption. However, a portion of the change's libraries have had to make during the pandemic will remain useful in the long term. Just to name a few, we can mention the fact that libraries are more aware of their existence as “media companies.” This is, their focus on creating digital media and promoting it, has increased. Another example could be curb site pick up of materials. While originally implemented as a Covid-safe measure, libraries may find that offering curbside pick of materials post-pandemic is a worthwhile innovation to allow library resources to be utilized by more people with greater ease.
NEW ACTIVITIES TO CONTINUE TO SERVE THEIR COMMUNITIES
Libraries quickly found new and useful services to carry with them going forward. Reallocating print collection budgets into perhaps other forms of media is one example. Working to coordinate your library with local services and information to better solidify the library’s place as the community’s information hub is another. Other digital adaptations that might serve continues use beyond the pandemic are digital ordering of materials alongside the usual in-person services, and as well as implementing or expanding the use of virtual library cards.
Our CoLibri team is completely aware of the importance of the libraries around the country, and that’s why we want to collaborate with them in providing them new services such us our Eco-friendly product. Please take a minute to browse for our services. Feel free to contact out team if you have any questions.