Charleston Carnegie Public Library asks community to help strategize its future
The Charleston Carnegie Public Library has asked the local community to contemplate what the library’s future should hold.
Quite literally, the library’s 100 Big Ideas in 100 Days contest, which runs through April 9, gives area residents a chance to brainstorm, submit an idea -- for a new program, collection or technology, among other categories -- and earn a chance to win a Kindle Fire in the process.
“We want people to dream big, give us any and all ideas, even if they think it is too expensive," Kattie Livingston, the library’s adult services manager, told the East Central Reporter. "You never know; there could be a grant out there that we could look into."
In all, there are seven categories for which to submit an idea. Participants can submit ideas through the library’s website (www.charlestonlibrary.org), or visit the library in person and ask any of the librarians for a form to fill out for the contest.
“We’ll give them a drawing slip for their name and phone number, and then they are entered into a drawing for a Kindle Fire at the end,” Livingston said.
More than 70 suggestions already have been received from children, youth and adults. Some of the ideas have included an Xbox to check out, more homeschooling programs and a TV with gaming capability on it for the library’s teen area. Another idea is virtual reality.
“That is becoming a big thing," Livingston said. "It is just something the community probably wouldn’t be able to afford on their own but something the library could provide for them to use."
Livingston added that the library has never held such an all-encompassing initiative that touches upon everything that’s available in the building.
“We are asking for ideas on technology, programs, events, the atmosphere in the library, how we do our publicity, or if there is anything they want added to our collection," she said. "This is just … more focused and I think it is bringing the library to people’s attention."
The 100 Bigs Ideas in 100 Days contest, which offically started Jan. 1, also is an initiative to get the community involved in what they want out of the library.
“We are looking forward to try to put together more strategic goals for our library," Livingston said. "So what we are hoping to do with the ideas is to be able to map out strategic goals."
And while not all ideas can be implemented -- sometimes due to budgetary issues, for instance – every idea is welcomed, she said.
“The end of the 100 days ends up bumping right up to the week of National Library Week," Livingston said. "In that time frame, I will put together this report and then will be able to go to the board with it. We are really excited about it and hopefully people take the opportunity and give us their ideas."
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