County libraries delivering books to most vulnerable members

County libraries delivering books to most vulnerable members
Sean Crowley, Driver Assistant, Cork County Council delivers boxes of books to housebound members in Bantry, as part of Cork County Council's new Library Delivery Service

At a time when many people are cocooning, Cork County Council’s Library Service has started delivering books directly to the doorsteps of some of its vulnerable members.

In the past week, libraries from Kilworth to Kilcrohane have delivered more than 200 boxes of books to the homes of members in the county who are isolating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

While the county's libraries have long been an integral part of communities, Chief Executive of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey said they had adapted their services to find a safe way to bring books to older people.

"We recognise the significance of the service to many and, since our library buildings closed, have adapted to ensure we can continue to provide a selection of these services, albeit in a different way. The library’s online resources have provided a lifeline to those with access, but we appreciate digital options are not for everyone and staff have worked quickly to identify a safe system to deliver books to older and more vulnerable citizens," he said

Cork County Council’s library staff have contacted regular and now housebound borrowers to compile a list of those interested in a delivery of books to their home and five library drivers are currently working daily on the service, collecting boxes from the local library, before delivering them directly to homes. 

One library member said receiving his book delivery was like Santa arriving. “I am over the moon after 14 days of isolation, now to be followed by undefined 'cocooning' time, things are getting a little stressful but this is so amazing,” he said.

The Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Ian Doyle has commended the new service which he said would help to reduce the effects of social isolation.

“This new service will be a lifeline for many. A delivery of new books will provide an escape from the daily news, an alternative way to pass the time and will help reduce the effects of social isolation,” he said. 

The service is available to people who are cocooning and isolating throughout the duration of this pandemic. 

Further information is available from local libraries or Cork County Library Headquarters (021-4546499).

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