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Thompson-Nicola Regional District’s library program recognized

Ashcroft Library Service Extender program first of its kind
Community Excellence Awards presented at the 2023 Union of B.C. Municipalities annual convention. (UBCM Photo)

The Thompson Nicola Regional District has received an honourable mention for excellence in service delivery at the Union of BC Municipalities Community Excellence Awards for an innovative library program that has essentially doubled the library hours for local residents.

In December, the TNRD launched the Ashcroft Library Service Extender program. Modelled after similar programs in northern Europe, the Library Service Extender initiative allows patrons to visit the library outside of the regularly staffed hours to check out books, use wifi and public computers, study spaces and hold meetings.

Patrons have to register for the program and are then granted self-service entry using a keypad and code, using technology developed in-house by Thompson-Nicola Regional Library and IT staff.

The initiative was the first of its kind in the province, doubling the hours the library is available to Ashcroft resident from 26 to 52 hours a week.

The awards recognize and celebrate UBCM member First Nations, regional districts and municipalities that have implemented projects or programs that go above and beyond in meeting the purposes of local government in B.C.

“The awards are intended to showcase outstanding initiatives and share them with other members to implement in their own communities,” UBCM says in a statement.