On the Carlow Mayo Library Facebook page on May 25, CEO and head librarian Carrie McKenzie announced that the library had gotten a grant to purchase some new computer software for their patrons to take out and use outside the library. The project is called Info on the Go! and it is expected to commence the second week of June.
McKenzie says that this funding came from the Healthy Community Initiative grant, and amounted to $5,090. A $31 million investment from the Canadian government, the Healthy Communities Initiative helps businesses and small municipalities and transform public spaces in response to COVID-19 over the next two years. It supports projects under three main themes; creating safe and vibrant public spaces, improving mobility options and using digital solutions to address changing community needs.
McKenzie reveals that Info on the Go! is the title of the project and that with this grant they applied for in April, they were able to buy four laptop kits.
“These kits contain an external DVD drive, a wireless mouse and Microsoft Office software for home and student. We chose HP laptops so that they are as close to our desktop computers as possible, and will help our patrons with limited technology experience transition better,” she says.
McKenzie says that the grant was offered to help out businesses who are struggling due to COVID-19 restrictions. As the library shares a building with Hermon Public School, and to keep their patrons and the students safe, they have been limited to curbside pickup.
“This precluded us from offering computer usage to the public. Now we will be able to lend out these laptops which can be used with our WiFi [at the library] or the WiFi at the community centres in Carlow Mayo that the township put in,” she says. “We are excited to be offering this service, hopefully the second week of June as long as the shipping of the new computer software isn’t delayed.”
Michael Riley, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Bancroft Times