Some new staff allowed for new ideas to be brought forward within the South Central Regional Library this past year. That according to Cathy Ching, Director of Library Services for SCRL.
"We seemed to be taking on more projects and programming, it looks like we're trying to become more engaged in our communities. Our Branch Librarians are reaching out to the schools and trying to get the schools to come to the library throughout the year rather than closer to summer time when we want to promote our summer reading so that's been very good for generating some new interest."
Ching adds these tours are also a great opportunity to find out who has a library card and says often the teachers make arrangements ahead of time for those who don't have a card, to get one during the tour.
Meantime, Ching points out that memberships at SCRL this past year remained in-line with figures from 2015 and says between sixty-eight and seventy per cent of people within the region have a library card. She adds however, it's hard to track how often these cards are used, noting some people just have cards in order to use the public computers.
"We seem to have hit the groups that are always engaged in libraries so my goal is that we start engaging people who may not realize that there's other things in the library."
Ching adds a lot of homeschool students in the area use the library as a resource for their studies and says SCRL has the ability to borrow materials from other libraries across Manitoba, even Canada, in order to meet the needs. She notes by the end of October, SCRL had nearly 6,000 inter-library loans for the year.
And while figures for 2016 are still being calculated, Ching says nearly 290,000 books had been checked out through SCRL by the end of October - about 30,000 more than in 2015. As for Ebooks, she says that number sat around 11,000.