Southern Georgetown County Library
By Mark Wallace, Jr.
On November 1 and 2, 2017, I went to tour some colleges with some seniors, juniors, and sophomores that attend Teach My People in Pawleys Island. We visited Winthrop University, Wofford University, Anderson University, Francis Marion University, and Greenville Tech. Something they all had in common was libraries and study halls.
It was amazing seeing all the students with their notebooks, ipads, and other devices reading and studying. It really took me back to my days at Benedict College networking and completing assignments throughout my college experience. Seeing those college students and remembering my own college experience helped me realize how beneficial a library is to a community.
Public libraries bring to a community more than just books and banks of computers. Libraries are places where individuals gather to explore, imagine and interact. Libraries build citizens. They educate individuals and foster thoughtful communities. They are essential components of communities worth fighting for and worth funding (Morris, 2011).
As important partners in community sustainability, libraries help revitalize struggling or depressed neighborhoods. They are places where people come to know themselves and their communities. Libraries provide important business resources, especially for small local businesses. Libraries offer opportunities for remote access, making it possible for those who do not have transportation to access cultural and educational offerings.
These are all examples of many of the amazing things that libraries are doing to build and maintain strong community connections. It therefore goes without saying that the utility of the libraries goes far beyond its basic function as a building full of books and information. Libraries play a major role in educating the citizens of the world. They are especially important to developing countries that are aspiring to have a more promising tomorrow (Senville, 2009).
I am grateful to say that Georgetown County is moving forward with the construction of a library in the North Santee/Sampit community. The new library should include plenty of computers, an inviting story time room and children's center, study rooms, a conference room, and a nice adult area. It will be a place for kids, teens, and adults to participate in many community activities: literacy work, community gatherings, and educational and cultural programs.
Morris, D. (2011, May). The public library manifesto: Why libraries matter, and how we can save them. YES! Magazine.
Senville, W.M. (2009, Summer). Libraries bring to our communities. Planning Commissioners Journal, 75.
Urban Libraries Council. (n.d.). Richmond grows seed lending library. Accessed from http://www.richmondgrowsseeds.org.