The Winfield Public Library has been awarded a $24,639 grant through the Kansas State Library and the Institute of Museum and Library Services to help respond to pandemic-related challenges with upgraded technologies, both within the library and in the community.  Libraries throughout Kansas were eligible for the grant, and funds support library projects that safely respond through services, outreach, and digital inclusion efforts.

“We recognize that we’re in a different place than we were before March 2020,” library director Patty Wagner said. “How we connect and share information has changed. As part of our comprehensive strategy to expand access and outreach both within our doors and throughout the community, these additional funds help us continue evolving how we create, provide, and deliver our services moving forward.”

Approximately half of the grant will be used within the library to add or upgrade technological equipment that enhances and expands in-house, outdoor, and virtual meetings, education, events, and programs, and includes cameras, an interactive panel, projection and sound system devices as well as non-tech additions such as a new podium and PPE station. The other half of the grant will be used to purchase solar-powered charging benches for the City of Winfield to add to public spaces in the community. Residents can use these benches to charge their devices using electricity generated by the benches’ solar panels.

“This partnership with the library is another step forward and pairs well with a recent partnership with USD 465 to add safe and secure public WiFi to our public spaces. We all achieve more when we work together to make Winfield a better place to live and do business,” city manager Taggart Wall said.

“The library and the city continue to look for areas where we can partner to serve the community in innovative and impactful ways,” library board of directors president Erica Lann-Teubner said. “Part of the process includes exploring and experimenting with the latest technologies, and this grant provides an opportunity for us to do that.”

Visit wpl.org to discover WPL’s upcoming programs, exhibits, and opportunities. The library is open to foot traffic 7 days a week, 9 a.m. - 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. - 6 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Saturday; and 1-5 p.m. Sunday. Masks are required within the building, and all ages are welcome. Curbside services are available upon request.

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