Auckland Council’s mobile librarians are on a mission to explore new areas and visit larger and more diverse groups.
For librarians, spending “more time serving and less time travelling” allows better engagement with Aucklanders and showcases the mobile library service to more people than ever. And they sure did that over summer, visiting more than 30 multi-cultural events.
Sophie Fletcher, Mobile Librarian, loved taking the library to Diwali Festival and found it particularly rewarding to meet first-time users.
"It was an amazing turnout; we had thousands of visitors to the festival and many of our visitors had never been inside a mobile library before. Some of the families with children made repeat visits because their children enjoyed the mobile library so much," she says.
Sophie was especially pleased that the mobile library drew the attention of older children. “It gave us the opportunity to talk to them about a library membership and all that it offers, such as summer reading programmes, internet access, magazines, music and – of course – books!”
The adventures continue
The Maui Pātaka Kōrero Kaewa / Mobile Library, illustrated with Māui legends, enjoyed a day on the viaduct at the Tāmaki Herenga Waka Festival and commemorated Waitangi Day with a visit to Waitangi ki Manukau.
Other mobile libraries celebrated our national day at events where fun interactive activities included storytelling, weaving and make-your-own mini waka.
There were visits to Christmas parties and Santa parades, community cultural days, A & P shows in rural areas, Lantern Festival, Music in Parks and Pasifika.
Even Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern showed her love of libraries, stopping by a mobile library at the Albert-Eden Schools’ Cultural Festival. Unfortunately, she didn’t have enough time to do some colouring, a very popular activity that day (maybe next time Prime Minister!).
The mobile library aims to make a greater impact on more people in the future.
Where might mobile libraries pop-up next summer? Beaches and popular campgrounds? Regional parks and sporting fixtures? Who knows, but one thing is certain, the mobile libraries won't stop adventuring anytime soon!
Join Auckland Libraries for free at any of the mobile libraries or at your local branch.
Head to aucklandlibraries.govt.nz to find out more.