Wednesday, April 13

Be Money Smart at the Library

 Libraries will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no libraries. --Anne Herbert

Inflation is defined as the rate of increase in prices over a given period of time, and while most people can not do much about inflation, they can be money smart. Money Smart Week is a national public education program that empowers people with the knowledge and skills to make better-informed personal financial decisions. The American Library Association supports the program, which is scheduled for April 9-16, 2022, because the library is a great place to be money smart.

One of the most important reasons that the library is money smart is its location within the local community. A full tank of gas or more is not needed to make a trip to the local library. Programming is available for all ages at the library, from preschool story time to adult books clubs. Passive programming is also available at local libraries, including make-and-take crafts, drawings and guessing games for prizes, and handout activities to enjoy in the library or at home. One of the most advantageous programs for families is the Summer Library Program -- six weeks of free entertainment for the local community. With the sponsorship of local businesses, families can enjoy a variety of presenters and programs -- all free and all local -- at their community library. 

Not only is saving gas money a smart solution offered by the local library, but also saving money on books, DVDs, and other items available for checkout. Librarians love book stores as much as anyone who loves to read, but purchasing books during times of inflation might not be as important as buying groceries. (Some librarians might debate that point.) Why purchase the latest bestseller by your favorite author when you can check it out at the local library. And, if that bestselling book happens to be located at another library 40 miles away, it can be requested from home and delivered to your local library for pick up, usually within a week. The same is true for blockbuster movies, children's DVDs, and television series. Each month, libraries order the most current DVDs available. Another money smart solution for families is to trim the paid subscription services and check out the free collection at the local library.

Free is the best money smart option during times of inflation, such as free wifi at the local library. Almost everyone has some form of internet service at home, but an afternoon at the library provides the entire family an outing. Mom or Dad can read free board books with baby, while teens sit in comfy chairs enjoying a cool space to use their smartphones. Students can improve their reading skills with graphic novels, early readers, bilingual books, or the latest young adult series -- choosing the books they want to read. All of the above are money smart solutions for the entire family. With increased wifi speeds at CMRLS libraries, all residents are welcome to access the library's free databases  -- listening to downloads on Freegal, reading magazines on Flipster, or reading ebooks on cloudLibrary. 

While libraries might not solve the inflation issues facing families in our communities, we can offer money smart solutions. If you want to save gas money, enjoy free programs, and trim the family budget, the library is definitely a money smart start. 

No comments: