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Public Library Systems Are Making Resources Available Online

Photo courtesy of Lee County Library System

Monday marks the beginning of National Library Week, an annual celebration of libraries and the people who work in them.  It's a tradition started by the American Library Association in 1958. 

Libraries in Lee and Collier counties are not letting COVID-19 social distancing get in the way of celebrations and are using the time to highlight online resources. 

Lee County Library System’s manager of programming and community outreach, Melissa Baker said the library has quickly adapted during the pandemic.

“Unfortunately with the buildings closed we cannot circulate printed books, but there are several digital platforms that offer content that we subscribe to and we provide free to our card holders,” Baker said.

Baker said those with internet access can login to the Lee Library System and access books, movies, and e-learning resources for children and adults.

“Some of the resources that we can offer right now are bonus resources for library card holders that ordinarily you’d have to be in a branch to use,” Baker said.  

In Collier County, senior librarian for marketing, outreach and programming Rose LeBarge said moving in-library services like story time for children online has been well received.

“We usually at a story time might have 30 people there, now we are at story times where there are several thousand people in the audience, watching,” LeBarge said. 

The assistant director of the Collier County Public Library Catherine Cowser said they want to make sure library resources are accessible during this time.

“If you have not registered for a card or you’re not currently a card holder, we’ll give you a temporary card that will extend out until we reopen,” Cowser said. 

In Collier County, the public library system has partnered with CareerSource to offer unemployment forms at seven different locations. 

Librarians in both Lee and Collier counties are available during regular business hours to assist the public with accessing online resources. 




Andrea Perdomo is a reporter for WGCU News. She started her career in public radio as an intern for the Miami-based NPR station, WLRN. Andrea graduated from Florida International University, where she was a contributing writer for the student-run newspaper, The Panther Press, and was also a member of the university's Society of Professional Journalists chapter.