I work in a town that has a very wealthy and white population - except for during the day, when the library hosts the caregivers of their children. Many of the nannies and babysitters live outside of town, don’t have library cards, and English isn’t their first language - instead, they speak Spanish, French, Haitian Creole, Chinese, Latvian, and more. I really wanted to reach this population and show them that our library services are for them too.
Caregiver Appreciation Day was a program that ran right after our most popular storytime. We decorated the room with streamers, had free coffee and tea, a table of coloring pages for child distraction, and then two information tables: one with information about early literacy skills and programs for children, and one with information about adult services. The most popular aspect was the raffle. In order to get a raffle ticket, people had to ask us a question about the library, and then we asked them a question. Survey questions included:
What do you wish the library would do or change?
What languages do you speak?
What’s your favorite part about the library?
What resources do you use at the library?
Why do you come to the library?
What could we do to serve you better?
We also all wore nametags and gave out little stickers I designed that read “We Love Our Caregivers”. We had over 70 attendees and got some good feedback on our space and programs. Most importantly, we found out that most of our caregivers don’t have library cards and that they didn’t know they could get one.