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Bridging the Gap

posted January 2021


For the fourth year, and for the first time virtually, Live Oak Public Libraries provided an orientation for the Memorial Health University Medical Center (MHUMC) Pediatric Residency Program.  As part of their training rotations, the residents learn about various community resources, including the library.  Normally, doctors go on an in-depth, in-person tour of one of our library buildings, but this year, the presentation was online.


The Library's Community Engagement and Youth Services Teams shared an overview of library services, with an emphasis on early literacy resources for families.  One medical resident said of their experience,


"This community resource may be the most important and underutilized... I feel as though the public libraries are doing so much, particularly during this pandemic, to bridge the gaps in education, food insecurity, among other things, that it has not been noticeable up until now.

I personally feel I have not utilized the libraries as much as I could have, now knowing that they offer faxing and printing services at cost, and they were a spot for early voting, which would have been more convenient than going downtown to vote in the general and runoff elections.

As for child-oriented programs, they do a menagerie of crafting and play therapy, have college and other test preparation, online learning resources, and do outreach with school programs. I also didn’t realize that the libraries are interconnected and you have access to millions of volumes of text should you need to borrow a book from elsewhere.

I will definitely be looking at what resources the public libraries offer where I ultimately practice, as they provide a hub for information and resources for families.”


Our library system is grateful for this ongoing partnership that gives the healthcare community a better understanding of free public library programs, which they can share with parents and caregivers. 


Email us if you would like library staff to do a presentation for your organization or school.