The Public Libraries can serve the Community by Reaching the Unreached.In Developing countries like India, the public Libraries has yet to reach about 90% of the Rural population and about 40% of the Urban population.Majority of villages does'nt have the public libraries.So the target of the Public Libraries is to reach the unreached.
Thanks for the first contribution to this discussion. A survey of inhabitants 15-74 years old in Lithuania (2011) showed that 1/3 of population have visited library during the last 12 months. Frequest users are socially active groups - children and youth, professionals and office workers, those having higher education. People in middle years, also those with lower educational backgrounds, pensioners and unemployed more often said that they are not using libraries. So indeed unreached or underserved community members and groups are the way to go. But taking into account constraint resources, I wonder, if building an offer should libraries focus on certain social groups or look for specific needs that are shared by many?
From experience of Public library in Koprivnica, Croatia I can agree that it is possible to reach the unreached if this intention is implemented in public library work on conteptual and strategic level (vision, mission, values etc.) and pragmatical level, i.e. everyday library services offer. In last ten years we have manged to get quite new groups of library users - newborn babies and their parents, marginalised groups of citizens - the blind and visually impaired, the Roma children and youth, the unemployed, disabled.. It is a result of our "small steps strategy", expecting results not immediatelly, but in a longer period. It is based on three pillars: informing, educating and rising awareness in local community and society in general on the public library potentials to meet the needs of these groups of citizens.