This week is Ontario Public Library Week, celebrated every year to recognize the importance of public libraries in the communities they serve.
The North Grenville Public Library (NGPL) is a true gem in downtown Kemptville, with a passionate staff that is ready to help all patrons, every day, with a smile. With a staff of eleven, they all work together to make sure the library runs smoothly and efficiently.
Service and Delivery Manager Sierra Jones-Martel looks after everything that goes on on the library’s floor. “I make sure everything is the way it’s supposed to be,” she says. “For me this is living the dream.” Sierra says one of the best things about the library is that it is accessible to everyone. Anyone can come in and use the computers, check out a book or participate in one of the library’s many programs. “There is something for everyone, it makes everyone equal.”
Long-time employee of the NGPL, Patsy Brooks works at the front desk, catalogues books and looks after inter-library loans. Throughout her 18 years of employment with the NGPL she has worked in many buildings and seen a lot of babies grow up. “Libraries bring everything to communities like this,” she says. “It’s access to information, books and other materials, it’s a community hub for all ages.”
Front desk clerk Jessica Ainsworth loves working at the library because it gives her the opportunity to really be a part of the community where she lives. “I love talking about books,” she says, “We offer so much more than some people think we do.”
When it comes to programming, Liz Dwyer is their go-to person. She is their Coordinator of Community Engagement and works with community groups to develop all types of adult programming. This fall the library is offering a science and technology group, board game night, a quilting club, two knitting groups, a book club and the seniors group Youngsters of Yore. “We are always open to input from the community,” Liz says. “We have the flexibility to meet the community’s needs as they change.”
The library also offers many children’s programs which have just started up again for the fall. NGPL CEO Rachel Brown says that their Reading Buddies program and their Getting Ready for Kindergarten group are particularly popular. Rachel says when fall registration opens everything explodes. “It’s like when tickets go on sale for a rock show,” she says.
There are also other programs available for children at the library that you don’t need to register for. This includes drop-in story times, music, play times and even bingo.
The library also offers lots of online services as well including free internet, e-books, audiobooks and many databases. NGPL employees are always happy to help anyone who walks through the door to take advantage of all the services they offer. It is a true community hub whose main goal is to serve the community. “When someone actually comes in, they see that we are above and beyond books,” Rachel says. “They are always surprised at how much stuff we have, and we love meeting everybody in the community.”
For more information about the NGPL and the programs and services they offer, visit www.ngpl.ca or better yet, pay them a visit at 1 Water Street in downtown Kemptville.