As 2018 quickly passes into the history books, I am delighted to take a few moments to check in with all of you.
This has been an incredible year for Brampton Library; it is hard sometimes for me to believe that all of this has happened in just the past 12 months:
- Complete redesign of our website bramptonlibrary.ca, your portal for unparalleled free digital products and services. With bright graphics and clear navigation, our new website is a fully accessible environment that supports you. As an organization dedicated to public service, ease of access is a core tenet of all we do.
- In response to your request for more time, we were thrilled to announce an important service expansion: All our branches are now open from 10:00 am - 9:00 pm every Monday through Thursday and 10:00 am - 6:00 pm every Friday through Sunday, except on holidays
- Children’s materials (with a few exceptions) are now fine-free!
- Launches of new digital products available free with your library card on our website: STEM Village for children and their caregivers, Gale Small Business Builder for entrepreneurs of all description and Kanopy for streaming films and TV shows for all ages
- Building on our ‘Library of Things’ borrowable collection with the introduction of GoPro kits and Starling baby word trackers to join children’s Launchpad tablets, already in circulation
- Opening our newest Springdale Branch Library at Bramalea Road, just north of Sandalwood Parkway. With walls of glass and stunning lighting features, Springdale literally calls out to its neighbours to come in and be a part of it and you have responded: with 1000 visits per day, 7 days per week.
- Celebrating 160 years of public libraries in our community. We started with just two shelves of books in the Mechanic’s Institute many decades ago! Today, Brampton Library has 7 branches, with an 8th under construction, and a new van, Brampton LIbrary On-the-go, bound for schools, community centres and under-served areas
- Our maker spaces are busier than ever! Vinyl cutters, 3D printers, scanners and much more are available free of charge at our Four Corners, Chinguacousy and Springdale branch locations. Check in with our knowledgeable and friendly staff for assistance or an introduction to these technologies.
I began my career as a children’s librarian and remain devoted to advocating for the public library’s important role in a safe, democratic and supportive society. I was honoured and delighted to be invited to speak at Brampton’s first ever TEDx event: The Next Level.
How do public libraries embody the concept of ‘next level’? While libraries have been around for centuries, the public library has completely reinvented itself in our communities in the last decade. Gone are the days when librarians sat behind the desk, waiting for people to approach us to find a book that would answer a question. Our business model has morphed from content provision to the facilitation of content creation. To hear more, I invite you to watch the talk and leave your comments, please visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L51h8BBu7b8
Looking ahead, we are at the halfway mark in our 2017-21 strategic plan. I look forward to connecting with you on our stated goals to be a strong community presence, neighbourhood champion, place for belonging, great service experience and respected leader.
Heartfelt wishes for a happy and healthy holiday season. We look forward to seeing you in our branches in the new year!