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Libraries without librarians check in to South County Robert Moreno | Sat, Nov 11 2017 12:00 PM

The county of San Diego’s Family Resource Center in Chula Vista provides a variety of services to area residents. On Tuesday morning, the center at 690 Oxford St. also became home to the county’s third library kiosk as part of the 24/7Library To Go program.

The program is a partnership between the San Diego County Library and the county’s Health and Human Services Agency aimed at making libraries more accessible to communities.

“Our partnership with Health and Human Services Agency allows us to promote early childhood literacy and healthy living to families visiting the family resource center,” said Migell Acosta, library director. “Families will get the support they need to lead a healthy lifestyle from the family resource center and gain the tools they need to learn and grow with access to materials from the 24/7 Library To Go kiosk.”

The kiosk is located just outside the center and is open 24/7 and is equipped with about 350 items such as popular books, DVDs and books in Spanish. Customers can check out and return materials to the kiosk, place holds on any material throughout the county library system, download eBooks and audio books, browse the catalogue, and a Wi-Fi hot spot. Customers must have a county library card to check out materials.

“These are very unique elements of our library system,” said District 1 Supervisor Greg Cox at an unveiling ceremony. “And I think it’s only going to be the wave of the future in regard to making libraries more accessible to the citizens throughout this county,” Cox said.

The staff at the Bonita-Sunnyside Branch Library will be responsible for operating the kiosk and making sure material is in stock.

This is the first library kiosk in the South Bay with one located in Bonsall and the other at the County of San Diego’s Operations Center in Kearny Mesa.

Acosta explained that the kiosk works like a carousel.  A person picks the item they want and the inside of the kiosk rotates like a carousel.  He said it is similar to a Redbox for DVD’s except people get to see what goes on inside.
Acosta said the 24/7 Library program is a way for libraries to reach more people.

“We want to be in as many places that we can,” Acosta said. “But library buildings are quite expensive, so this allows us to be in more areas of the community and serve more people and make it more convenient.”
San Diego County Libraries has 33 libraries in their library system and two bookmobiles.

“This is part of our ongoing effort to invest in library services and remove barriers to information and knowledge,” Cox said.

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