My Health Minnesota Go Local at Rotary

June 30, 2010 Note: The website referenced in this blog post has been decommissioned by the National Library of Medicine. More information about the decision to end its support is available at this technical bulletin.

The University of Minnesota Alumni Association sponsored the program for Cambridge Rotary this noon. The speaker they brought was librarian Karla Block from the UM Bio-Medical Library. Karla talked about the on-line resource My Health Minnesota Go Local, which is part of the National Library of Medicine partnership with libraries and library consortia to provide national coverage of health services. The Minnesota site is one of 24 Go Local projects with many more in development.

Go Local is a tool to bring accurate information about health services in local geographic areas, including hospitals, physicians, nursing homes, support groups, health screening providers and many others.

Go Local is linked on the ECRL site under the menu bar Reference Desk. Look at the Reference Desk section to find links and information guides from ECRL librarians.

Go Local at Rotary
Karla Block, Associate Librarian at the Bio-Medical Library

Barbara Misselt, ECRL Director

Telling Our Library Story

I just finished a presentation for the Cambridge Rotary Club. I’ve done similar presentations before, but I never get over the excitementment of being able to give away so much — and it doesn’t raise my library budget or cost me anything personally.

I started out today’s presentation by asking people to show their library cards . . . . and today’s program-sponsoring Rotarian passed out a prize to everyone who had a library card. While they were proudly holding up their library cards, I told them that was the most valuable card in their wallet. I talked about the services our 14 libraries offer, and about our online services that they can use 24/7. Wow! They were taking notes and asking questions.

As I said, I’ve done pretty much the same presentation in both Regions in which I’ve worked, and the response is the same — total amazement and appreciation for what they didn’t know they’ve had for quite some time now. I wonder how many others haven’t heard about us yet. And I’m reminded that we’ve got a lot of marketing and instruction to do.

I’m looking to go out and talk to as many people as I can and demo our fine products and services. Just call and invite me!

Barbara Misselt, ECRL Director

It’s New Year’s Resolution Time!

With the New Year fast approaching, we’re all thinking about New Year’s Resolutions. Some of us will go on a diet, some will decide to exercise more, some will tackle classic literature, and others will pledge to do something to make a difference in the world. (Some of us just might attempt to do all of the above!)

Every year I pledge to do something that will change lives…that will make our world a better place. One year I bought a goat through World Vision for an African family. Another year I sent some of my textbooks to Africa to support students there. This past year I gave my time and political voice to a variety of worthwhile projects through involvement with the ONE Campaign and DATA (Debt, AIDS, Trade, Africa).

Though all of those acts have been fulfilling and worthwhile, I’ve come to realize that not all of us can be like Bono and have the dedication, determination, and influence to single-handedly save the world…or even a mere continent. Besides, this year, I am looking to do some good a little bit closer to home. As I was brainstorming ideas for ways to do so, I had one of those Homer Simpson “DOH!” moments. Hello! I work at a library….why not become a paying member of my library’s Friends of the Library group!

Joining a local Friends of the Library group is a fabulous way to give back to the community and to support the library. Friends groups, like the one here at the Chisago Lakes Area Library, are vital to the success of the library. Think about the many things that these groups do: They purchase new library materials for their libraries; they fund library programs; they raise money for the library through book sales and other wonderful activities; and their members often volunteer at the library. Whether you become an active Friends member who helps set up programs or a dues-paying “inactive” member, your support effects every single library user who comes through the doors. And, you know, you might just benefit, too…think of all the local contacts you will make by becoming involved in this community group! Plus, there is that whole Pay It Forward concept to keep in mind…

Needless to say, I’m excited about the opportunity to make a difference in my library and in the local community. So come on! Join me! Call or stop by your local library to find out how to join your community’s Friends of the Library group!

~~~Angela~~~

Chisago Lakes Area Library Branch Librarian