Residents of Philippi and Barbour County may soon add a new verb to their vocabulary- "geek." Since Aug. 1, the Philippi Public Library has been participating in the "Geek the Library" campaign, a community-based public awareness campaign. The campaign highlights what people are passionate about and how libraries can support them, in an effort to heighten awareness about the critical funding issues public libraries face.
"The Philippi Public Library is 'Geeking the Library' to raise awareness about the importance of library funding support and of the library's vital role in the community, especially in today's challenging environment," said Director Judy Buckner Larry.
"Geek the Library" features local educational material that introduces "geek" as a verb, and encourages the public to talk about what they 'geek'-whether it's beekeeping, superheroes or art. The public awareness campaign illustrates the fact that everyone is passionate about something-everyone "geeks" something-and that the library supports them all.
As the economic downturn slowly recovers, millions of Americans are turning to local libraries for educational opportunities, job-searching resources, business start-up resources entertainment and much more. The increased demand for library services is taking a toll on libraries already experiencing flat or decreasing budgets.
State and local cuts in funding have an impact on public library hours, programs and staffing, forcing some libraries to close indefinitely. While most people have visited their public library and understand its important role in their community, many do not know that libraries are at risk or that local funding for libraries is heavily influenced by community members.
"Like all libraries in West Virginia, the Philippi Public Library heavily depends upon state and local tax dollars, donations and fundraising to continue to serve our community, to enhance and improve materials, technology and programs, and to provide a well-trained and efficient staff," said Larry.
Larry hopes the "Geek the Library" campaign will start a conversation about library funding to inspire more people in Philippi and Barbour County to take personal responsibility for keeping the Philippi Public Library vital in this community. For more information about the campaign, visit www.geekthelibrary.org. For more information about the programs and services at the Philippi Public Library, visit philippi.lib.wv.us or call Larry at 304-457-3495.