Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Where Does Community Start and End?

I am a huge proponent of the fact that local libraries create community in so many ways. This morning I was at a committee meeting for the Way Library foundation and Lisa Richard the administrator told this anecdote.

Last night one of the reference librarians took a call from a person who wanted to know a title of a book. Now this person didn't know the author and really only knew that the book was about the Holocaust and animals. The librarian vaguely remembered something like that, but told the patron that she would call back when she had something more definitive.

She did the research and found the book title. When she called the patron, she mentioned that while our library did not own a copy of the book, that she could get a copy for him pretty quickly from the library interloan system. The patron said, "Oh, you don't need to do that because I am in West Palm Beach (Florida), but I knew how good your library is and knew that you could help me.

When we think of community, in general, I think of a small defined local group of people. Libraries nowadays have far reaching arms into the world, making community become a much bigger word.

How has your library helped you?

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