Historically, library bookmobiles have filled an important outreach niche, fostering educational accessibility and putting books in the hands of community residents, schools, and day care children, especially in remote areas. Though many take for granted library (or even bookstore) access, getting to the local library isn’t always feasible, practical or possible for many community residents. For schools and programs with limited funding or resources, bookmobiles can deliver an infusion of fresh books to stale bookshelves and keep learning alive and exciting.
Recently, Lyndon’s Cobleigh Library Books on Wheels II Bookmobile was taken out of commission due to repair costs and safety issues. Grants and fundraising have been the sole source of bookmobile funds. At the start of this year, the Bookmobile Coordinator position was also eliminated due to dwindling funds and what apparently appeared to be a dismal future for the library’s existing bookmobile.
We are writing to keep you informed about the status of the Cobleigh Library Bookmobile. Unfortunately, Books On Wheels II (BOWII) went in for repairs a few months ago and we have been advised by the repair technician that it is no longer a safe, viable vehicle. It is ten years old and has served us well.
Grants and fundraising activities have always been the sole source of funding for the bookmobile and all associated costs such as insurance, maintenance, staff and fuel. The bookmobile, even though part of the Cobleigh Library, is not part of the operating budget that comes from the Town of Lyndon. (Cobleigh Library Trustees)
Though the library is now relying on an AmeriCorps member to deliver area programming using her personal vehicle, the community no longer has a bookmobile that can roll up to a school or organization and allow residents and children the opportunity to select and borrow their own books.
The Cobleigh library welcomes ideas, comments or suggestions concerning the bookmobile, so if you have a great idea that could help restore this community service, consider picking up the phone, sending an email, stopping into the library or attending a library meeting.
For more information, check out the Cobleigh’s Letter to the Community from the Trustees here.