Author: bethdaviesvpl

VPL Access Card

Hi all,

The Vancouver Public Library Board approved the permanent adoption of the Access card at its July 2015 meeting. This low-barrier card had been introduced as a pilot in March 2013. The pilot was extended with different parameters in September 2014. The approved parameters enable the card to be used by those with and without address ID. Borrowers are limited to 2 items at a time, and do not incur late fines. You can read the report at



Honoraria and food

Hi everyone,

I’m curious about what various library systems do to acknowledge participants’ time when seeking input from community members for library purposes.

At VPL, we’re compiling a report on our Access VPL card (low-barrier card) and are interviewing community members about their experiences in order to create case studies. Our general policy is that we don’t provide honoraria, but this is one of those cases where we’re looking at the possibility.

Thanks for any input!


Community-Led and Library Schools

I was interested to read that among the recommendations in the RSC Expert Panel Report:  The Future Now: Canada’s Libraries, Archives, and Public Memory ( is:


I think this is excellent news!

Annette de Faveri and I have taught a 1-credit course in Community-Led Libraries at the iSchool at UBC for the last number of years. This year, we’re expanding to a 3-credit course beginning in January 2015. I’d love to get your ideas as practitioners on the knowledge, understanding and training you’d like to see in new graduates that you hire into community work. We’re planning a mix of lectures and exercises, guests from within and outside the library world, and some experiential learning.

Many thanks for any ideas,


A Discussion in the Round: Community Led Service at Your Library

At the recent Canadian Library Association conference in Victoria, BC, members of the CLA Community-Led Library Service Network hosted round table discussions focusing on implementing community led library service at participants’ libraries.

Each table had wide-ranging and engaging discussions on everything from getting organizational support to a day in the life of a community librarian.

You can read notes from individual table discussions at 2014 CLA Community-Led Libraries A Discussion in the Round.

Community Engagement Training at VPL

VPL has just finished rolling out one phase of community engagement training to our staff. Over the past three weeks, we’ve had 350 staff attend a 2-hour workshop that invited staff to look at where we’ve been, what we’re doing now, and what else we can be doing. In the spirit of the community-led approach, the workshop relied heavily on group conversations and learning from each other.

The foundation of the training is an internal guide, Connecting the Dots: A Guidebook for Working with Community. Designed to appeal to staff at all levels of the organization, it’s filled with stories and pictures. The guide is available online at