An update from the new Information and Digital Service Manager:
Staff within our teams at City Library have had a bit of a change over but it’s still business as usual.
13-19 June was National Carer’s Week and we celebrated with a marketplace event at City Library. It was great to see the Bewick Hall buzzing with approximately 90 people (and 1 dog!!) who came to find out how they could be supported as carers. They got the chance to learn how to play the ukulele as well! In addition, the Information and Digital team hosted an introduction to online shopping session where we looked at how to buy things from Amazon and how to save money on food shopping through My Supermarket – if you haven’t been on this website before do check it out. We hope this will become an annual event in the City Library during National Carer’s Week.
We’ve also had a host of other agencies in using the City Library this past month including the Housing Advice Centre, the community police, Connexions, Your Homes Newcastle advice and support team and Duke of Edinburgh representatives to name but a few! These agencies use our space on level 1 which can be booked for FREE (yes you did here that correctly – free!!) by any information and guidance (IAG) provider. Agencies have access to prime drop-in space in the stunning library atrium, high visitor numbers, a bookable interview room for confidential appointments, information display facilities, free wi-fi and much more. If you fit into this category and would like to promote your service to a new audience contact the Information and Digital team on 0191 2774100 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Alongside many other training sessions, Nick, Luke and Anne delivered ebook taster sessions to visually impaired users at MEA Housein Newcastle as part of Make a Noise in Libraries Week. This was a learning curve for all of us as we did not have experience of the screen reader software called ‘Guide’ which Newcastle Society of the Blind use on their PCs. This software not only enlarges the text, but also guides users around the page without having to use a mouse and can speak the text out loud. During the session, we showed the participants what an e-reader looks like and how it can enlarge the text so it can be more easily read. In two of the sessions we had a Sony e-reader as well as an Amazon Kindle and opinion was divided between which the group preferred! The Kindle was liked for the largeness of the text and for the contrast between the letters and the back of the page, but the Sony reader was liked for its touch screen and its navigation….so the group concluded that a combination of both of them would be just perfect. There’s a proposition for you Sony and Amazon!
In June we hosted our first business workshop in partnership with Newcastle Science City. This exciting new partnership will bring a range of workshops and public lectures on wide range of topics designed to help businesses grow including subjects from PR to market research, sales and marketing to recruitment and HR. Our first workshop, delivered by Fred Pernet from proAgile and Simon Green from Newcastle Science City, was on the subject of digital innovation and was very well received by audience members. Our next event is called Law for Business and is on Wednesday 29 June from 8:30am – 10am at City Library. This session is aimed at individuals with new product or service ideas that could be turned into businesses but need an introduction to legal issues. We look forward to seeing you there!
Information and Digital Service Manager