Are you a Victoria Public Library patron? If so, how can we improve our services? If not, how can we change that?
The scope of services offered by public libraries has changed greatly over the years, and we need to make sure we are still providing our patrons with the services they need. The library is crafting a strategic plan that will guide changes and innovations over the next few years, and we need your help to make sure the plan is a great fit for our community.
While it’s common for libraries to re-assess to make sure they are keeping up with the times, we also see this strategic plan as part of the unique growth and development taking place in our City government and in our community. With the finalization of the downtown master plan last year, there has been much talk of building a downtown that residents will want to visit. The library is part of downtown, and we want to do our part to build a community where all of our residents will enjoy living.
We are working with a consultant, Maureen Arndt, who has helped to reshape more than 220 libraries across the country. This is crucial because residents often don’t know what they want from their library, or they may not be aware of changes that have helped other communities. Ms. Arndt has helped us to provide information and formulate questions for our residents that will get them thinking about the possibilities.
We are currently in the public input phase of the strategic plan, which means now is your chance to let us know how you feel about your public library. Whether you’re a regular library visitor or you’ve never stepped through our door, we want to hear from you about how we can make the library better.
To take the survey, visit www.victoriatx.gov/library and click on the pop-up box to be taken to the strategic plan webpage. There, you’ll find links to the survey in English and Spanish. We’ll ask you a few simple questions about things like how often you use the library, which services you use the most and what types of services or amenities you’d like to be added. The deadline to respond is June 3.
In addition to the survey, we recently wrapped up a series of community meetings where residents had the opportunity to learn more about programs and changes being implemented in other libraries and discuss which ideas might work in our community. Meetings were held at the library, Vickers Elementary School and Meals on Wheels, and we also held virtual meetings with English classes at Victoria West High School.
After the survey closes, we’ll move out of the public input phase and focus on meeting with stakeholders before our consultant drafts the final plan, which we expect will be brought to the City Council in the fall. I encourage all residents to take part in the survey so we can get an accurate picture of our community’s needs. If you have any questions, you can reach out to the library at 361-485-3301 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dayna Williams-Capone is the director of the Victoria Public Library.