Beaufort Today -

@ Your Library: A letter from the director

Together we have accomplished a great deal over the past 12 months. As you can see in my update below, it takes an entire community to develop a vibrant and thriving library system.

Thanks to the support of the Beaufort County Library Board of Trustees, Beaufort County Council, county administration and the public, we were able to increase the hours of operation at our three largest branches (Beaufort, Hilton Head Island, Bluffton), provide funding to purchase a new bookmobile, and refresh and update the library system data network infrastructure, replacing 14 outdated data switches and more than 100 public computers.

We have renovated/updated some library facilities by replacing carpeting in the Hilton Head library staff area, the Beaufort library children’s and adult meeting rooms and the technical services wing of the Beaufort library. During May, we will be replacing carpeting on the first floor of the Beaufort library and the staff area and kitchen of the Bluffton library.

With the help of the Friends of the Beaufort Library, we have purchased some new furniture for the first floor of the Beaufort library and plan to purchase new children’s room furniture and a new circulation desk in the near future.

With the help of the Friends of the Bluffton Library, we have purchased new book display furniture and added new shelving for the Friends book sale area.

With the help of the Friends of the Hilton Head Library, we have purchased new children’s Launchpads and increased purchases of books for that library.

With the help of the Public Library Foundation of Beaufort County, we have purchased additional children’s Launchpads for multiple libraries, added a South Carolina Reconstruction special collection of library materials at the St. Helena library and added a significant literacy collection there.

Through a significant donation from the Dataw Island Conservation Conservancy in honor of Earl Dietz, we have purchased numerous titles dealing with conservation-related issues for the St. Helena library.

Please consider joining one of the three Friends of the Library groups that support the Beaufort County Library System. All are 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and provide funding for additional library materials and children’s and adult programming for their associated branch libraries. Also, please consider making a tax deductible contribution to the Library Foundation of Beaufort County.

Together we can make a real difference in the quality and quantity of library services available to the citizens of Beaufort County.

On behalf of the staff of the library system, we offer our heartfelt thanks to all of you for your support. Together we will continue to provide outstanding library service to the residents of Beaufort County.

Ray McBride is the director of the Beaufort County Library System.