I grew up in a fairly small town north of Toronto. Where I’m from, our library – The Aurora Public Library – was less of place to rent books and more of a valuable commodity to the many members of our lively community. I spent many evenings meeting classmates in the convenient, yet significantly limited secluded study rooms offered by the establishment. The quiet, calm environment presented us with the possibility to truly focus in a less distracting setting than the ones which usually surrounded us at home or at school and the library itself proved to be an ideal central meeting spot, especially around exam periods.
Although the only time I actually made use of the services my library had to offer was when I was feeling particularly studious, I also made a point to visit with my younger brother, who greatly enjoyed a specific room of the establishment distinctively intended for children. Filled with colourful books, puzzles, and toys, this room was not only entertaining due to its varied content but also for the frequent events that unfolded every so often, attracting a crowd of curious preschoolers, eager for the Story Time Sessions, the Library Lego Days or the Arts&Crafts Program.
So when questioned on my local library, I connected these two purposes for frequenting the organization and understood that the major significance of the Aurora Public Library lay in its role as a community and cultural centre, this which promotes personal productivity and social engagement, all while allowing people of all ages and backgrounds to associate with each other, share ideas, and come to better understand themselves and their neighbourhood.
– Sarah Ruest