Bookmobiles and other traveling library services bring books and resources directly to those who need them.
Laura Buchanan, a bookmobile librarian for the West Georgia Regional Library System, believes it is important to reach community members where they are, including those who have limited or no access to transportation.
“So many patrons are not able to access or even have awareness of libraries in their area so this way we are able to meet them where they are in the community,” said Buchanan. “If they don’t have transportation or have limited transportation then we can assist them, sign them up for cards, renew their cards, and provide them with library services they can get from a physical library.”
West Georgia Regional Library System’s Bookmobile has a recurring stop at Zest Preparatory Academy located in Douglasville. The school’s founder and executive director, Monique Carruthers, appreciates the mobile library’s service to their students. “We are really excited to have the library come to our school. As a brand new public charter school, we are still building out our library, so for us it has been invaluable to have someone come in and speak to our children twice a month and allow them to check out books as we build our library,” said Carruthers.
The library system has a history of using bookmobiles to reach underserved communities. Lindy Moore, library services director for Douglas County Public Libraries, says the bookmobile’s mission is to eliminate barriers. “Being able to bring books out to students who would not normally be able to access library materials, that’s been at the heart of everything we do, eliminating barriers to access to our patrons and citizens,” said Moore.
Currently, there are 11 bookmobiles and 34 mobile units across Georgia public library systems. Systems with bookmobiles include, Augusta-Richmond County Library System, Bartram Trail Regional Library System, Chattahoochee Valley Regional Libraries, Cobb County Public Library, Forsyth County Public Library System, Gwinnett County Public Library System, Middle Georgia Regional Library System, Moultrie-Colquitt County Library System, Southwest Georgia Regional Library System, and West Georgia Regional Library System.