by Olivia Murray
Morgantown Public Library’s book delivery service has been added to the library’s list of permanent features.
BookDash is a library delivery service for the library’s homebound patrons. The service underwent an initial trial period and, after the library found it was successful, the institution decided to make it continually available.
Corina Chang, manager of marketing for the Morgantown Public Library System, said BookDash was launched in September, when the library acknowledged the difficulties of finding entertainment and education during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“There are people that are particularly vulnerable and lack the means to come to the library, especially during this health crisis. Though we have a fantastic digital library that rivals our print collections, there are still physical materials and resources that people prefer to use,” Chang said.
The library wanted to make those physical materials and resources available to high-risk individuals reluctant to leave their homes during the pandemic.
Chang said during the service’s trial period between September and November, BookDash gained a group of loyal patrons and that contributed to the decision to make the service a permanent library offering.
The library also increased the frequency of delivery times to weekly drop-offs rather than the bi-weekly ones offered during the trial period. This was a request of patrons.
“This sign of increased demand is encouraging as we move going forward,” Chang said.
Chang added that the service aligns with the library’s goal of serving without discrimination, through free and open access to information and resources.
“I felt the need was there and I think that it is definitely something that will grow,” John Fox, BookDash coordinator, said.
All that is needed to be eligible for BookDash is a library card. Interested parties should sign up by noon each Friday to receive items the following Wednesday. Sign-up is available at mympls.org.