St. Charles Public Library: Annual report now available to the public

The St. Charles Public Library’s 2020-21 annual report is complete and available to the public.

This year was one of change for the library, including the move back to 1 S. Sixth Ave. in July. As you read the annual report, which is available on our website at scpld.org, you can see that while we operated at the Haines Middle School building for the majority of the fiscal year, we were able to adapt and grow our services and programs to the community.

While the number of patron visits and materials checked out was lower because of COVID-19 restrictions, attendance and participation at virtual programs was record-breaking. This included programs such as Pop! Bang! Fizz! Stupendous Science, the Sunday Concerts and Miss Katelyn’s Neighborhood.

Along with adding virtual programming to our services, Youth Services created early literacy and parenting bags. These kits cover multiple themes. Topics include death of a loved one, divorce, etc. The goal of these bags is to offer a selection of materials on sensitive topics that patrons can check out without having to talk with a staff member.

We also provided library cards to residents through online registration and to District 303 students.

In addition to these services, the library formed new community partnerships that kept our patrons engaged when space issues or COVID-19 restrictions limited interaction. We partnered with the Kane County Forest Preserve to create StoryWalk, an outdoor program that features storyboards along the paths of forest preserve trails. Our creative IT team made personal protection equipment as giveaways for staff and patrons, creating a mask-sizing tool and a touch tool to interact with keypads without touching devices.

We hope that with the opening of our new building, you will visit us and rediscover your library. I encourage you to read the annual report to see all that was achieved this fiscal year. As always, we strive to provide quality services and programs that educate, entertain and empower.

Edith G. Craig is director of the St. Charles Public Library District. The “Discover Your Library” column runs the second Thursday of each month. Feedback can be sent to editorial@kcchronicle.com.