Here in America (and probably in other places around the world as well), we live in a culture that’s dominated by the internet and social media. A culture that’s centered on always going and always trying to get one more step ahead.
A culture that doesn’t really stop to enjoy simple pleasures. A culture that tends to take things for granted.
And one of the things that I think people here in America tend to take for granted are our libraries.
These places are special and they have resources that I think are important to our communities.
- The books, of course. People can come into the library and check out books to read. I think this is a good resource for communities to have. Libraries can provide books to people that they might not have had access to otherwise. And for people that simply want to read a book that they don’t own, the library is a perfect place to look. And by reading books from the library, people can be introduced to genres, authors, and/or series that they might not have encountered before.
- Things like movies, audio books, etc. Sometimes, libraries will provide resources like these. And the reason why I’ve included these in this list is for reasons similar to those in the above point.
- The events. A couple of local libraries have several events throughout the year, probably having a few each month. These events can gather the community, encourage reading, help people know where the library is and possibly what libraries offer, etc. And these events (as I’ve noticed at a library a few miles from my house) can help get kids interested in reading. Or at the least, get them motivated to read more.
- Computers. In some of the libraries I’ve been in, there have been computer areas. These areas can benefit the entire community. They can be of use for people looking and applying for jobs. They can provide internet for people who may not have access to them at home or elsewhere. They can help with printing off documents a person may need to have. And there are probably quite a few other purposes the computers can have.
- The Wi-Fi. There may be people like me who have their own computers, but for some reason, don’t have access to Wi-Fi of their own. In providing Wi-Fi, libraries provide a possible place to work or have access to the internet. And with me coming to the library to work within the past week or two, I’ve noticed that it helps me to not get as distracted.
- A quiet place. Libraries are generally known for being fairly quiet places. And there are quite a few reasons to enjoy this quiet. Maybe we’ve had a stressful day and need a quiet place to come and get away from everything. Or maybe we need a quiet place to get some work or studying done. Or maybe we like to read in relative quiet. Or maybe we simply like being in a quiet place surrounded by books. Whatever floats the boat.
There are many things that make libraries the great places they are.
And I’ve probably only scratched the surface.
Libraries are a resource that more people should be aware are available to them. And they’re places I think people should utilize more.
Libraries can be overlooked. And this kind of makes me sad.
But it does make me happy that there are still quite a few people who come to the library and use the resources it provides.