Congratulations to the four Virginia public libraries recognized by the Virginia Association of Counties (VACo) for excellence in local government programs! The winning entries for the 2019 Achievement Awards focused on addressing high-priority community issues that challenge counties today. It’s no surprise to us that public libraries continue to support their communities in vital ways, and we’re pleased to help share their wonderful programs with you. The libraries are:
Pepper ®, the humanoid robot, was developed for service use, program delivery, and teaching coding to the community of all ages. Library staff formed new partnerships in the community, created more sophisticated tech programming and grew their reach.
Montgomery County and Floyd County:
In partnership with the Literacy Volunteers of the New River Valley (LVNRV), the library implemented the Family READS (Reading and English to Achieve Dreams and Success) Program, which focused on English as a Second Language (ESL) and family literacy throughout the service area. Program graduates reported 100% improved English vocabulary, 83% improved English listening and speaking, 100% improved skills in reading with children and 100% increased use of the library.
The Eagle Rock branch is in the most agrarian and rural part of the County. Because many of its patrons have direct relationships to the family farms in the area, the library began a Seed Library that lets people, especially children and teenagers, engage with their agricultural roots. The library provides seed packets, including rare and heirloom varieties, in exchange for the returned seeds from the new harvest. The ties into the Board of Supervisors’ vision of promoting agricultural innovation and furthering the next generation of farmers in the County.
Caregiver Kits at Henrico County Public Library (HCPL) enable those experiencing memory loss or dementia-related illness to connect easily with family members, friends, and caregivers by revisiting familiar themes from their lives. The kits contain books with vibrant photographs, DVDs of classic movies or television shows, popular music CDs, and discussion prompts, all chosen with the goal of encouraging memory and conversation. Each kit has a theme with broad appeal such as local history, cooking, or pets.