One Year Later
March 26, 2021
When we closed on March 20, 2020, we made a promise to you, our patrons: “We’re going to make sure the same things that bring you into our doors are available to you at home and waiting for you when we all return.”
What a difference a year makes. Not quite how the saying goes, but it's certainly true for all of us. 2020 was a year none of us will ever forget. Filled with tragedy and heartache for many. And one filled with finding new ways to work, play, and interact with those around us.
Perhaps you made a phone call to help pick your next e-book in the spring, visited us for a reserved appointment in the summer, curbside holds pickup … Or, have come in and browsed our shelves since the fall. Whatever way you’ve used our library, we thank you and hope that you found what you were looking for (and few things you weren’t looking for) & have plans to visit us again soon – in person or online.
Many of us are not quite ready to have a serious reflection on the past year. However, we do want to give you some of the highlights on what your library’s been doing for you and our community since the middle of March 2020.
- Seamless transition from in-person reference & chat to at-home user support. We literally had no service disruption between Thursday, March 19 in-person & Friday, March 20. Our phones continued to ring & our library staff continued to provide you with answers to questions & assistance in finding items of interest.
- Huge shift from buying physical books & other materials to e-resources – including multiple copies of new releases & increasing the monthly allotment of items you could check out. This allowed us to see an increase in use by more than 40%, bring on thousands of new users to Overdrive/Library & circulate around 20,000 e-resources each month on Overdrive, Hoopla & RB Digital alone.
- We literally called you. With many of even our most active patrons being unaware of what services were available in the early spring of 2020, we called thousands of people to help them learn about e-books, how to download different apps and was available to them from home.
- Curbside services to support Stay At Home orders. The Napa location has delivered items to over 12,000 cars since the service began in May. And all 4 locations continue to offer this service. It was developed with a “user first” approach that really shows.
- Staff took advantage of a myriad of training opportunities to help support you, our patrons, & improve our services.
- Created a clear, concise phased service plan to support staff & patrons as we looked to the future & what reopening services would look like.
- Added Hotspots to our collection. More than 100 hotspots were added. These provide ongoing support for students, families & were a huge benefit during our fall fires. They continue to be a lifeline to distance learning in Pope Valley Elementary & other locations throughout the County.
- More than 20 staff assisted (& continue to assist) Emergency Operations (EOC), at the Local Assistance Center (LAC) & so much more. Of note are the many staff who are/were directly reassigned to other locations & those who made hundreds of phone calls to fire victims & to support our vaccine clinics & Covid hotline
- Take-home crafts, genre bags, school kits, literacy support & much more through curbside.
- Hundreds of bags filled with school supplies, donated books & more for families evacuated in the Hennessey & Glass Fire.
- Weekly online programming, including the continuation of many of our core offerings like Art in the Library, storytime, ESL, citizenship & much more.
This list isn’t exhaustive & but our goal this year was to stay nimble & respond to both patron needs & changing Stay At Home requirements to support you & your family. We hope you have benefited from this flexibility in services & we are glad to have been able to support you this past year.
We wish you the best as 2021 continues to bring renewed optimism for the future, decreasing cases, increasing vaccinations & a chance for many to see & spend time with those you hold dear.