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KDL Blog

2018 in review

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Library Card Challenge

Kent District Library had a year full of bringing more services to more people:

  • The new Bookmobile has arrived and is already busy visiting schools and community centers to serve people who might not be able to visit a library otherwise.
  • KDL began a partnership with The Rapid to provide books for all ages on 13 buses traveling different routes in the greater Grand Rapids area each day.
  • The Kelloggsville branch is fulfilling the important need to feed the hungry by providing breakfasts and snacks.
  • The Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped is making changes to bring added accessibility in the digital era with wireless material delivery and new devices with accessible capabilities as part of the FAR Project.
  • The Library Card Challenge has had a successful start. The hope is to get more than 120,000 students in Kent County library cards over the upcoming years. This is one part of an effort to bring third grade literacy rates up, along with participation in the Success Basics program which encourages families to love, talk, count, play and read together.

Other noteworthy KDL events in 2018 include:

  • After a hurricane devastated Port Arthur Public Library in Texas, staff and patrons collected two semi-trucks full of books to rebuild collections there. The successful effort resulted in four public libraries and eight school libraries receiving books to rebuild their collections.
  • Director Lance Werner was named 2018 Librarian of the Year by Library Journal and Penny Weller and Craig Wilson, KDL Trustees, were named ALA Trustee Citation recipients.
  • In the first week of July, the KDL Military Card was launched and 997 cards were issued to veterans and active military members by December 3rd.
  • Summer Reading this year had 2,680 more completers than 2017. 
  • Let’s Talk About…: A Reading Group is a new program encouraging kids to tackle big questions about social justice issues such as refugees and civil rights through small group discussion and books.
  • The new Ada Branch was announced and met its capital campaign goal quickly. The building will open in 2020.

We hope you will join in making 2019 just as amazing!