Govt grant extends library's reach

COFFS Harbour City Council’s free Home Library Service is to be expanded thanks to a $53,823 grant from the NSW Government’s Library Development Grants scheme.

The grant will allow the library to improve and expand the library’s talking book and large print collections; provide Home Library Service (HLS) members with access to a greater range of resources; expand the use of digital audio books by HLS members; and increase HLS membership through promotion.

“The Home Library Service provides a vital lifeline of library books and resources to housebound residents throughout the local area,” Coffs Harbour mayor Councillor Keith Rhoades said.

“These are people who are unable to visit their local libraries due to age, illness or disability. This grant will mean that HLS members will now have access to even more resources than ever before.”

The HLS service is provided free of charge and is supported by the generous contribution of volunteers who carry out the deliveries.

There are currently around 45 members, but the Library Service is hoping that the grant will allow that number to rise.

Using the funds provided by the State Government, the HLS plans to buy new talking books, as well as increase its large-print stock. In addition, a number of Playaway books and DAISY players will be acquired for loan to HLS borrowers who are print-disabled.

These machines provide a variety of digital formats for visually-impaired people with differing needs and abilities.

“Expansion of these collections is critical to allow for expansion of our HLS membership and the sustainability of these services, so the grant is very welcome,” library manager Enzo Accadia said.

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