Inside, Outside & Online: Building Your Library Community by Chrystie Hill

Community is a big buzzword at our library right now as we plan our40th anniversary for next year centered around a theme of community.  This book talks tells us that libraries are essential to a community and that libraries help to build communities.  That this community building is especially necessary now when many people are questioning the value of libraries in a world where so much information is seemingly available online.  We all need to remember that one of the most important aspects of the service that we provide is human interaction along with the information.  We need to work with the social capital that we have.  According to the book, the library is the “third place” in many people’s lives, after home and work.  For the people for whom this is true, we need to get these people to become advocates for the library.  They are often active in their communities, and are good resources for “getting the word out” about the service and value we provide.  A quote in the book contends “libraries are about service, or they are about nothing” and this is something all libraries need to keep in mind as they interact with their community members.  As marketers we need to highlight the services we provide to the community and also recognize how important building community partnerships is.  This book is a good resource on community building, an essential need for all public libraries.

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