Hello, library friends.
Happy National Library Week and Happy Earth Day! What a wonderful combination! The theme for National Library Week 2020 is "Find your place at the library." In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Library Association has adapted the theme to "Find the library at your place." While you can't be physically present within the NCL's facility at this time, "your place at the library" and "the library at your place" are at the forefront of NCL's planning as we strive to make available more information, resources, and services at "your place."
NCL is endeavoring to reach as much of our community as possible using multiple methods to share information and updates. We are learning, adapting, and growing in response to the needs of our community, the state of the world in which we live, and existing technological capabilities. We want to enable all community members to access digital materials and other resources and services, not only during this crisis but after it ends and as we continue into the future.
We are working on a plan that will allow us to safely offer services at the library when it is appropriate and recommended to do so. The safety and health of our staff, our families, our patrons, and our greater community are of the utmost importance in our decision-making process. Although I do not yet have a time frame, services will return in steps with stricter precautions and procedures initially, in line with the three-phased approach outlined by federal and state officials. We will share updates with you by email, via social media, and on our website.
NCL has undertaken several approaches to move forward through this unprecedented global event. The following update details some of what we have done, are doing, and plan to do.
NCL remains closed to public entry due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are available by phone, email, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram Direct Message during weekday regular hours (Monday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.).
The due date for books, videos, and other materials currently checked out is extended until after we reopen. The library's dropbox is closed, so materials cannot be returned at this time. No late fees will be charged during this closure.
We have temporarily removed blocks on patron accounts for unpaid late fees and/or lost or damaged items. We have activated accounts that have been expired less than 5 years and renewed all accounts through at least Dec. 31, 2020. We have cleaned up our accounts database and deleted accounts that have been expired for 5 years or longer. If you need a library card or have issues with your account, please call, email, or message us, and we will happily help you. You can also apply for an eCard by filling out the eCard Request Form on this website.
Our digital library, Library2Go, is available anytime from anywhere with an Internet-enabled device. We have a wide selection of ebooks, digital audiobooks, and streaming video. You have access to these resources now with your existing library card.
High-speed wireless Internet access (Wi-Fi) is available 24/7 from anywhere in our parking lot. In your device's Wi-Fi settings, select NCL-1 if your device does not connect automatically. Our Wi-Fi has excellent download and upload speeds. It does not have a password, and you do not need a library card to use it.
In-person programs and events for the remainder of April and for May are cancelled and will be rescheduled if possible.
NCL continues to build and grow our online presence. Our website is undergoing some remodeling, and several new features and pages have been added. The library has established an Instagram account, which we hope will help us reach more of our community.
We are offering a small amount of virtual programming. Virtual programming is programs, classes, and events that are offered through an online (Internet-accessible) platform, such as Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Zoom meetings, or pre-recorded video and/or audio that is shared to NCL's social media or website. As previously stated, we are learning, adapting, and growing. Please be kind and patient as we learn and share, revise, and try again.
Regarding virtual programming, we are testing the use of the library's social media sites and website as a virtual community room, similar to the concept of our Founder's Room community meeting room. Programs, classes, and events presented this way adhere to our existing meeting room policy. Presenters offer informational, educational, or cultural content that is open to the public and does not require attendees to purchase anything or to pay the library or presenter to attend. Rarely, classes or workshops may require a materials fee, but this information would be made clear up front. Use of the library meeting room (physical or virtual) does not imply that the library staff or Trustees endorse the viewpoints presented.
Two local presenters have volunteered to lead virtual classes. Both have used our community meeting room to teach classes in the past. Neither of these individuals are paid or employed by the library.
Tiffany Davis is presenting a series on essential oils on Thursdays at 5:00 p.m. on the Newton County Library's Facebook page using Facebook Live. Tiffany is a local entrepreneur and a Young Living Essential Oils distributor. The information she provides in her presentation is free and is centered around her experience with Young Living Essential Oils products.
Aprilhelen will be leading therapeutic yoga classes using the Newton County Library's Zoom account. Aprilhelen is a yoga and meditation teacher with many years of experience who continues to grow her practice through acquiring new skills and certifications. The day and time for these classes has not yet been set. We will share scheduling information and how to access the classes in the near future.
NCL is here for you as we all navigate this situation, try to make the best decisions possible using the most appropriate guidance, and do the next right thing.
Please let me know if you have any questions, concerns, or comments or if I can be of further assistance.
NCL wishes you, your loved ones, our community, and the world peace of mind and good health.
Your library loves you!
Kenya Windel, Director
Resources for information on COVID-19:
Arkansas Department of Health
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
The White House's Opening Up America Again Guidelines
Newton County Library resources:
NCL Facebook Page
NCL Instagram Page
NCL eCard Sign-up
NCL Catalog with Electronic Resources
NCL Digital Library (Library2Go)
Getting Started with OverDrive/Library2Go
Getting Started with Libby (Library2Go App)
Arkansas State Library resources:
Arkansas State Library Traveler Databases (includes COVID-19 resources)