A series of public community forums are being held by Armidale Shire Council to look at how the Armidale Region Library can be enhanced as this region's learning and social hub. The workshops will help develop a 21st Century Libraries Strategy, a blueprint for making Guyra and Armidale libraries more vibrant public spaces by identifying what people like their existing services, and brainstorming ways to improve and build upon the resources already provided.
A general sessions for all interested people will be held in the Armidale library meeting room at 11am to 1pm on Saturday July 20.
It will be followed by another general session at the Guyra Council Chambers from 1.30pm to 3.30pm on July 30.
Chair of Council's Community Wellbeing Advisory Committee, Councillor Debra O'Brien said although the meetings were open to current library users, it was just as important for residents who did not visit the libraries or use their services.
"It's essential we hear from people who rarely, or never use the Armidale or Guyra libraries, to get a clear picture of what's needed to make them relevant to more residents," she said.
"We want to hear from as many people as possible, of all ages and backgrounds, to help identify ways to encourage a greater proportion of our community to utilise the libraries' resources and spaces."
To further encourage a diverse input, specific workshops will also be held for youth on Wednesday, July 31, members of the Aboriginal community on Tuesday, July 30 and residents from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds on Thursday, August 15.
"The workshops are a dynamic way to get people talking about the libraries' strengths, how they can be an even greater asset for their users and how we can make their services more relevant and appealing to a broader section of our community," Cr O'Brien said.
Those who would like to attend are asked to register the workshops by contacting the Armidale library on 6770 3636 or the Guyra library on 6770 7123.
Cr O'Brien said a 21st Century Libraries Strategy online survey was another easy way to contribute with more than 500 people having already completed the survey. Visit the Your Say Armidale website to compete the survey before Friday, August 30. Printed copies of the survey are also available at the Guyra and Armidale libraries.