Public Libraries: A Not So Hidden Treasure

Today’s public libraries are portals to and repositories of all the world’s information: past, present, and (when we get there) future. That’s no small thing!

And everyone (with a library card) has free access to all of this information. Wow, talk about a treasure!

People of all ages benefit from the services of their public library. Librarians makes sure collections of materials suits a wide range of ages and interests. The library offers online classes in anything from software programs to photography to ease you into that job or hobby you’ve been thinking about. Programs taking place at the library are designed to instill and nurture lifelong learning for any number of target populations. Those needing help with a specific research challenge¬†simply have to ask. Librarians are trained to help you–for free!

Communities are enriched by their public libraries, which act to “level the playing field” when they provide free access to information and technology to all of their patrons. Because the public library is so often a common gathering place for people of all ages, it becomes a safe center for socializing and personal enrichment. Hosting author readings, educational lectures, and art shows, libraries also enhance cultural opportunities within the community. All of these factors help to improve the general quality of life within the community.

Are public libraries worth the tax dollars used to fund them? You bet they are! Public libraries are incredibly efficient organizations. By sharing resources (like databases, computers, software, movies, print materials, and audio materials), they buy only a limited quantity, but make those resources available to a maximum number of patrons. Beyond this simple economically efficient model, public libraries have vast resources (print, electronic, and online classes) available to help anyone start and manage a small business, thus helping to grow the economy. Need a grant to help fund a project? The library can help get point you in the right direction.

Let’s just sum this up by saying your public library is a treasure. It’s one worth investing your time, energy and money into so that YOUR public library will be the best it can be.

Andrew Carnegie thought so.

Bill Gates thinks so.

We hope you think so, too!

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