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  • Chestermere Public Library increasing online services

    Chestermere Public Library increasing online services pic 1
    Not only is the Chestermere Public Library increasing online services and eResources for the community in response to COVID-19, but they are also taking social distancing very seriously. Photo submitted by Cathy Burness
    Chestermere Public Library increasing online services pic 1
    Not only is the Chestermere Public Library increasing online services and eResources for the community in response to COVID-19, but they are also taking social distancing very seriously. Photo submitted by Cathy Burness

    The Chestermere Public Library is increasing online services and eResources available to people in the community.

    Every day, the team at the Chestermere Public Library is uploading Storytime videos and tutorials on how to use the eResources onto the Facebook page.

    “People need a little levity right now, I know I do, and the staff has a lot of fun with it,” said the Chestermere Public Library Acting Director Cathy Burness.

    Some of the eResources available include Solaro, which is an online version of a key study guide, TumbleBook Library, which has online story time animations, Hoopla, which offers movies, TV shows, comics, and audiobooks, and OverDrive which has a collection of eBooks.

    “There are so many, a lot of times, people don’t explore them because they are reading books, or they are doing other things,” Burness said.

    Adding, “Now it might be the time to really explore some of these things that they hadn’t really thought too much about.”

    At this time, library members are asked not to make a return, and all fines will be waived.

    Burness is currently in communication with the Marigold Library System to stop sending out all overdue notifications.

    “We can say all day long that there won’t be any fines incurred, but people are getting these emails that their books are overdue, and when it hits a certain level, then they are no longer able to access eResources,” Burness said.

    For anyone who has a membership that is about to expire, the Chestermere Public Library team is adding a month to their memberships, so they still have access to services.

    “For anyone who doesn’t have a membership but is really feeling like they want to use the eResources, we will give them a three-month membership free just to get them over this,” Burness said.

    “The three-month free membership is going to be a really big deal, because there are going to be people who maybe have never stepped foot inside a library, and they need the services that we have now,” she said.

    The team is also working out ways to take online payment and online applications for new memberships.

    Recently, Chestermere Public Library team has cleaned all of the shelves and books in the facility. However, it’s time to do it again. 

    “At this point, things will be washed, and disinfected, the shelves, and the outside of all the books,” Burness said.

    Although library members have been asked not to return any items, some books have been returned.

    Anything that is returned sits untouched for 72 hours, as that’s what the library has been told is the longest approximation of how long this virus may live on a hard surface.

    “We’re not touching them for 72 hours, then with gloves, we wash them,” Burness said.

    “We’re making sure we’re allowing time for whatever could be on there to no longer be viable,” she added. “Then, we’re washing and disinfecting.”

    None of the returned books will be put on the shelves until all of the shelves and all of the books have been cleaned, to avoid potential cross-contamination.

    “Everybody is under stress one way or another right now, and resources are more limited than usual,” Burness said.

    Burness encourages anyone who needs assistance accessing the eResources to call the library at 403-272-9025.

    “There are some people who are really feeling the pinch of not being able to come and get their one or two dozen books every week, we’ll help you through it,” Burness said.

    “We’ll figure out a way to get you on the eResources, there are all kinds of things that we can do to help. Or if you just need to talk to us about the book that you’re reading, give us a call,” she said.

    Moving forward, the Chestermere Public Library team is working to explore creative ways to connect with the community.

    “We’ll increase online services as much as we can. We’re really thinking outside the box,” Burness said.

    “We have very creative ladies here, people know how hard our staff work to please a customer, and everything has changed now, but we’ll continue to be creative and find creative ways,” she said.

    To apply for a library membership, please email Burness at cathy.burness@chestermerepubliclibrary.com, or call the library.

    Please visit the Chestermere Public Library website at https://www.chestermerepubliclibrary.com/ to access the eResources.

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