Monday, 18 May 2015

OverDrive Advantage Collection

Our downloadable eBook and audiobook service continues to be very popular.   We hope that you’ll be excited about our new addition to this service.  It’s called OverDrive Advantage.

Our downloadable eBooks and audiobooks is a shared service with seven other Nova Scotia regional public libraries.  The cost of the books is shared by all, with the exception of an Advantage collection.  OverDrive Advantage allows us to purchase additional copies of titles that will be available to only the users of the Annapolis Valley Regional Library.  For titles where we have purchased additional copies AVRL users are basically on two separate lists. Let me explain: For every 8 holds our users have on a title we are purchasing an additional copy for use only by our users.  For example, if there are 16 AVRL holds on a title we will purchase two additional copies.  The shared titles, as our two exclusive copies, will continue to be used by these 16 holds.  An AVRL user could be 40th in the shared list, but only 7th in ours. It is set up to get our users a copy as soon as possible.
Look for the Advantage symbol on the cover. Make sure you sign in to see all of the titles available, because the advantage titles don’t show up unless you are signed in. We hope that you will see reduced wait times for those popular titles.  

Remember you can check them out for 1 – 3 weeks, and it is all free and without any late fees.  Also, the MP3 audiobooks can now be transferred to a jump drive for use in your car or other player.

Happy reading,
Charlotte Janes, Head of Systems and Administration

Monday, 11 May 2015

Bookmobile Onsite Service

You have probably seen our new Bookmobile driving on the highway, at farmers’ markets, in parades or at a community stop. It is a beautiful vehicle and we are very proud of it. 

Our new Bookmobile has allowed us to develop new services. The Bookmobile now delivers all the benefits of a public library right to the front door of institutions, enriching resident’s lives with books, audiobooks, DVDs and magazines.  Our new customised Bookmobile is equipped with a hydraulic lift in the rear. There are five removable bookcarts on the Bookmobile which supply a good choice of material. Staff offload these bookcarts and take them into senior facilities and adult rehabilitation centres. Our collection and staff provide entertaining and informative materials as well as empower people to make choices and manage their own selections. These services are available free of charge.

Residents and staff of facilities that are served with onsite service are registered individually for a library card and can borrow library material and become responsible for it. They may also make requests and our staff will bring them as they become available. Library staff provide this service for 45 minutes per facility every three weeks. 

Our staff enjoy delivering this service and have met many wonderful people who are grateful to use the library. Well-attended Bookmobile visits can lead to enhanced library services, including special programs. If you would like more information on this service click here or call our office at 902-665-2995 ext. 234. 

Don’t forget to wave to us as we travel through the Annapolis Valley!

Submitted by Wendy Kearnes, Outreach Services Manger

Monday, 4 May 2015

May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month

Springtime can be exciting for all sorts of reasons but for allergy and asthma sufferers sometimes it only means the misery begins.  About 75% of asthma patients have an allergy.  What can be done? Make sure you are aware of your triggers and try to be proactive in your approach.    

Some tips include starting your medication about two weeks before your symptoms start if you suffer from seasonal allergies.  This can help mimimize the eventual symptoms.  Check the Air Quality Index and stay inside when pollen counts are at their highest. Try to avoid opening your windows and doors at home.  Drying the laundry inside will help keep your clothes pollen free.   Make sure you keep that inhaler handy especially when travelling.  If you are doing spring cleaning take note that you can meet the majority of your cleaning needs with products that are recommended as safe for people with asthma to use, such as salt, sodium bicarbonate (i.e.baking soda), washing soda, borax, vinegar and washing powder.  Another tip is having a shower before bed when you have been outside.  When you come in you are covered in unseen pollens and allergens.  Taking a shower means the allergens are no longer on your skin for you to breathe in for the next 8 hours when sleeping.  Wear wrap-around sunglasses when outside, this will keep pollen out of your eyes.     

The Asthma Society of Canada is a great place to start for more information. It includes an Allergies and Asthma help line.  Want to read about how to garden with allergies?  Check out this brand new title from your local library: The Allergy-fighting garden : stop asthma and allergies with smart landscaping or listen to  Living a healthy life with chronic conditions  in audio cd format for long-term management.  It’s been a really long winter so everybody should be able to enjoy Spring!

--Patricia Milner, Head of Reference Services

Monday, 27 April 2015

What's new at AVRL

On Monday, December 8, 2014, I was appointed Interim CEO at AVRL.  The AVRL Board wanted to take some time before it advertised for a permanent CEO.  I am pleased to report that on April 17, 2015 the permanent CEO’s position was advertised widely.  Check out the job posting on the AVRL website under Employment.

The CEO is the person in the organization who recommends and facilitates new services and new directions.  In addition, the CEO is responsible for seeing that effective library service is provided throughout the region by managing the  library’s staff and financial resources.  It is a challenging position.

Fortunately, the CEO is assisted in this task by competent and dedicated staff at Headquarters and in our eleven branches.  In my short time here I have been very impressed with AVRL staff and their ability to deliver exceptional services under sometimes very difficult circumstances.  This winter proved to be a very taxing one for all of us.  We have noticed an increase in Interlibrary Loans and the placement of holds for our own library materials.  We are guessing this is a result of many people finding it hard to get into their local branch and instead finding good reading listed in our online catalogue.

Hantsport Library under construction
 2015 is a year of substantial change for the AVRL.  Soon there will be a new permanent CEO and the Headquarters staff will be preparing for a new location by March 2017.  Also, Kentville, Annapolis Royal, and Hantsport are either in the midst of moving or planning for new facilities in the coming months. 

Change brings its stresses but also brings opportunities for positive change and new ways of delivering services.  It will be the new CEO’s responsibility to encourage development and ensure that services to our communities are disrupted as little as possible.  If you have been thinking of a service you would like AVRL to offer be sure to let the new CEO know what you need.  Just go to the AVRL website and hit Ask Us and the Contact Us Form.

My time as Interim CEO is limited but my interest in and support of the AVRL will be on-going. I may even send in a suggestion to the new CEO myself!  In the meantime, I will keep reading. At the moment I am searching my favourite little website to make sure I have read all of Georgette Heyer’s books.  If I find a title that AVRL doesn’t own I am sure they will be able to find a copy for me.  I love libraries!

--Lorraine McQueen, Interim CEO

Monday, 20 April 2015

National Canadian Film Day

This year, the Annapolis Valley Regional Library is participating in National Canadian Film Day on April 29th.   What is that, you say? Well, the organizers at REEL CANADA say this:

“April 29 is National Canadian FilmDay, a day to throw off the shackles of fear and insecurity, stand together with Canadians from coast to coast and pat ourselves on the back for something other than various ice-related sports and sports-related doughnut shops. (Not that we don’t love ice-related sports and doughnuts). It’s a light-hearted intervention for our national consciousness, a wake-up call to anyone who has not yet been exposed to the great cinematic stories we tell one another in this cold, vast country.  It’s a way to get over ourselves and have some FUN!”

Thanks to REEL Canada, our library has public performance rights to show these three Canadian films on April 29th.  Plan to join us at one of the following locations.

Rosa M. Harvey Middleton & Area Library – screening Dr. Cabbie at 6:30 pm

Windsor Regional Library – screening The Grand Seduction at 6:00 pm

Wolfville Memorial Library – screening The Disappeared  at 7:00 pm

Check at your local branch library or in the online catalogue for great Canadian film titles you can watch at home.