San Juan County libraries serve Spanish-speaking community
San Juan County libraries are welcoming members of their Spanish-speaking neighborhood to visit and check out items from a new and growing collection of materials available in Spanish.
The Utah State Library has identified the Monticello Library as having one of the largest and fastest growing populations of Spanish-speaking residents with a need for information and materials to live, learn, recreate and work successfully in the community.
Thanks to a grant from the Federal Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA) and state dollars, the Monticello Library has purchased books, videos, DVD’s, books-on-tape, and magazines in Spanish for children and adults.
This information covers many important topics of interests from parenting, pre-natal and infant care, diet and weight loss, nutrition, cooking, home remodeling, decorating and repair, learning English as a second language, understanding personal finance, emigration and obtaining U.S. citizenship to bi-lingual children’s books, popular Hispanic short stories and novels.
The materials are housed at the San Juan County Library in Monticello but are available to all patrons in the county.
There are now 24 designated libraries through out the state using these materials for the Spanish-speaking patrons in their communities.
The Spanish-speaking materials have been in place in these public libraries for over three years and according to a recent project evaluation and survey, the collections are drawing a large number of Spanish-speaking patrons.
“The Utah State Library is committed to helping local libraries serve their communities,” says State Librarian Donna Jones Morris.
“The Spanish collections help public libraries respond to the increasing demand for Spanish language materials especially in these rural areas.”
Library staff members are also attending several special customer service and cultural awareness training workshops to understand the information needs of their Spanish-speaking neighbors.