Charleston County Public Library (CCPL) has been awarded two grants that will help the library system provide enhanced innovative services and resources to Charleston County. A Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) Impact grant from the State Library will fund the development of a Mobile Creative Studio, while a grant through the Libraries Lead with Digital Skills initiative by the American Library Association (ALA) and Public Library Association (PLA) will fund digital skills training through the Grow with Google program.
The Mobile Creative Studio will provide Charleston County community members the opportunity to spend hands-on time with a wide variety of STEAM-related equipment, including digitization tools, art and textile-building equipment, editing software, musical instruments, and more.
“Many cannot afford to purchase some of this cutting edge or innovative equipment for home projects, hobbies or professional use. All our new libraries have or will have Creative Studios with access to this equipment and now thanks to this grant from the state library, we can expand that access,” said CCPL Teen System Coordinator Darcy Coover. “We will now be able to host programs at other library branches and outreach events, where community members can access these tools.”
The Mobile Creative Studio launched March 13th with its first program outside the John L. Dart Library. The studio will continue traveling to CCPL branches that don’t have their own in-house creative equipment. Though a full schedule is still in development, branches will include Main, John L. Dart, Cooper River Memorial, Dorchester Road, Otranto Road and John’s Island (once renovations are complete at these branches), Edisto Island, and McClellanville.
A second grant recently awarded to CCPL will allow the library to provide vital digital skills training for free to patrons through Grow with Google. This program is funded by Libraries Lead with Digital Skills, which was created so that local libraries can combine their own program offerings with Grow with Google training materials to offer virtual community workshops or other activities aimed at empowering small businesses to grow online or assisting job seekers to prepare for and find work.
“Workforce development is a major point of focus for CCPL, and we are working hard to provide the resources, training and education needed to ensure that economic opportunity exists for everyone,” said CCPL Adult System Coordinator Karli Gallagher. “The Grow with Google partnership and funding will allow us to make an even greater impact in our community in connecting people to the tools that can help them succeed.”
“Libraries have long been America’s gathering place for learning,” said Nicky Rigg, program manager for Digital Skills outreach at Google. “Grow with Google is excited to support library programs across the country to help ensure that economic opportunity exists for everyone.”
CCPL will host a different virtual Grow with Google event each quarter of 2021 covering topics such as “Design Thinking for Entrepreneurs,” “Digital Skills for Everyday Tasks,” and “Improving Your Resume with Practical Strategies.” Each program will feature a CCPL Adult Services librarian who will present the Grow with Google content while expanding on related available library resources and services. The next Grow with Google event will be on May 19. For more details on this and other upcoming CCPL events, visit ccpl.org/calendar.
For more information about these and other services and resources offered by CCPL, visit us online at ccpl.org, follow us on social media, or stop by your local library branch (operating status and hours may vary, please contact the branch for updates).