Tuesday, July 8, 2014
More than 20 years ago, Berkeley County Library’s bookmobile made its last rounds in South Carolina’s largest county, but now, in the day of digital and online media, the bookmobile is rolling again through rural communities.
Getting the bookmobile in gear was a six-year process of raising $170,000 through sponsorships, grants and fundraisers, according to Berkeley County Library Director Donna Osborne.
“Our current physical locations were not spread out far enough to reach all of the residents of the county ... we recognized that we wouldn’t have brick-and-mortar shops in these communities because they are so small,” Osborne said. “Berkeley County is huge and has a lot of communities well beyond the easy reach of a physical library.”
These are communities like Cross, where even if a resident might have a computer, he or she might not have good Internet access or a printer. So that means no access to job-hunting, resume-printing, and digital books available through the county’s digital library.
“People think that bookmobiles are out of date but they are not. It is a mobile library,” Osborne said. “Not everyone has access to the Internet.”
In June, Berkeley County Council unveiled the new, high-tech bookmobile during a committee meeting.
The county has funded three staff members for the van.
The bookmobile will visit small communities on a set schedule. The locations of the stops are the result of research by library staff, and reach out into each community. Many of the stops will be at churches or other community centers.
Residents can request books to be brought on the regular rounds, access the Internet through the van’s mobile wifi, and print items. There are also plans to host classes in the mobile unit.
“It doesn’t look that big but when you go inside it’s very roomy,” Osborne said. “When you get on it, you realize that every single space is well-utilized.”
First and third week of the month:
• Monday: 10:30 a.m.-noon at New Hope UM Church, Summerville, and 12:30 p.m.-2 p.m. Candlewood Lane, near Calvary Baptist Church, Whitesville
• Tuesday: 10:30 a.m.-noon at Cross High School, Cross, and 1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. at Cross Community Center, Cross
• Wednesday: 10 a.m.-noon at Alvin Community Center, Alvin; 11:45 a.n.-1 p.m. at Macedonia Church of God, Macedonia; 1:30 p.m.-2:30 p.m. at Providence Baptist Church, Macedonia; and 3-4 p.m. at Bonneau Beach Civic Center, Bonneau
• Thursday: 10 a.m.-noon at Sumpter Health Clinic, Russellville, and 3-4 p.m. at St. Stephen Baptist Church, St. Stephen
• Friday: 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at Harbour Lake Academy, Goose Creek; 11:45 a.m.-12:45 p.m. at Rainbow Mart on Old Black River Road, Sedgefield; and 2:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m. at College Park Family Center, Ladson
Second and fourth week of the month:
• Monday: 10:15 a.m.-11:45 a.m. at Forty-One Wilder Park, St. Stephen/Bonneau; 12:45 p.m.-2 p.m. at First Baptist Church, Bonneau; and 2:30 p.m.-4 p.m. at Anderson Baptist Church, Santee Circle
• Tuesday: 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at J.K. Gourdin Elementary; 1-3 p.m. at Eadytown Fire Department, Eadytown; and 3:30 p.m.-4:30 p.m. at Henry’s Bait & Tackle, Cross
• Wednesday: 10:30 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at Berkeley Citizen, Moncks Corner; Noon-1:30 p.m. at Jamestown Community Library, Jamestown; and 3-4 p.m. Cordesville First Baptist Church, Cordesville
• Thursday: 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at Cainhoy Community Center, Huger; 12:30 p.m.-2 p.m. at St. Paul Baptist Church, Wando; and 2:30 p.m.-4 p.m. at Goodwill, Cainhoy
• Friday: 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. at Belangia Community, St. Stephen, and 11:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at Fox Creek Community, St. Stephen
Berkeley County Government
Berkeley County School District
Berkeley Electric Cooperative
Coastal Community Foundation
Daniel Island Company
Friends of the Berkeley County Library
Rotary Club of Daniel Island
Santee Cooper’s Celebrate the Season
State and Federal funds awarded through SC State Library
Work Volf Consultants, LLC