Western Counties Regional Library celebrated its services available to people with disabilities in the first week of December.

The event tied into International Day of People with Disabilities on Saturday, Dec. 3.

“This is a week where we want to highlight services that we offer and showcase materials by, for, and about people with disabilities,” says Lydia Hunsberger, manager of collections and digital services for the library.

Some of the services and items the library offers include:

  • Large print books
  • Audiobooks and eBooks
  • Portable DAISY talking book players
  • Access to Centre for Equitable Library Access (CELA) and National Network for Equitable Library Service (NNELS)
  • Autism fidget and sensory tool kits
  • Borrow-by-Mail and staff-assisted selection
  • Videos and DVDs with descriptive text
  • Captioned videos and DVDs

Many of these items will be part of displays at library branches during the celebration. The library also has accessible computer workstations at seven of its branches. These stations each have a 27-inch full HD monitor, Adesso 4-times large print keyboard, and a Kensington trackball mouse.

Library staff members are available to help people find books or audiobooks, Hunsberger says. This can be a one-time service or it can be ongoing for people who prefer to have staff supply them with favourite authors and titles in preferred formats.

Available through the library, CELA and NNELS offer downloadable audio and electronic books (DAISY, MP3, and e-text formats), described video, and braille to people with print disabilities. People can sign up to download books to their own devices or computers, or have items delivered directly to their home or library.

“We want this celebration to raise awareness of the many services available for free at their public library,” Hunsberger says.

Lydia Hunsberger with items for People with Disabilities
Lydia Hunsberger of Western Counties Regional Library holds a portable Daisy talking book player next to the some of the items and technology available for people with disabilities.