Why People Love Champaign Public Library

Why People Love Champaign Public Library


I think the library has impacted me in so many ways. I like the fact that I have a place that I’m happy to go to,
that no matter when I come here, I will feel good and if you’re not involved in a job and
you don’t have the grandkids or you don’t have family—most of my family is gone— you don’t have anyone to talk to and not talking to someone is like
a way of dying every day in a sense. So, in a very real sense,
the impact is it keeps me alive. We fell in love with this library. We feel like it’s our second home.
So I know this is a safe place and and whenever somebody new, if new family
comes here, that’s the first place I recommend them to come. Just now a new family with the small baby also came from Israel. I told them this is your first stop. The library is home for me and I get to live every one of my dreams here. Having a really strong relationship
to a work space is critical to your output. It’s critical to your relaxation.
I can come here to relax. I’m at home. So much so, I could like take my shoes off
and kick my feet up—and you know I mean I always feel at home here. One of the things that I really appreciate about
the library and that I love to be able to share with the learners that participate in Project READ
is the feeling of pulling up, or getting off the bus in front of this beautiful
state-of-the-art building and walking in and feeling that I belong and I have
a purpose here and feel that you are entitled to being somewhere
that has this high quality. It belongs to all of us because of our privilege as being members of the community. It is so powerful to have the
Douglas Branch right in the community so that children and seniors have that
access to coming here and use the computers to get resources for school homework,
to get resources to study on cooking or just anything. It’s just,
it is so important to have this library in the community—and it’s a safe space. It’s just powerful. I love this library. I’ve had the luxury of
being with this library for I guess as long as we’ve been here. I’ve had the privilege of watching
the library evolve—and I think it’s easy to love this place. There are very
few institutions in the communities that I’ve had a chance to live in that can be
such a great place for so many different generations and so many different kinds of people. I love the library because it is just a place that energizes me. I love the buzz of the people here. I love being able to get up, walk around, get a coffee—or not—
not having any obligation to keep on buying my cups of coffee. I love that I feel like I have a community here because I also volunteer at the FriendShop,
on the weekends, so this is a place that I feel very comfortable and energized. I’m trying to expand horizons and the library helps me do that and it’s not just about like getting a book good book in a kid’s hand, but the fact
that they are bringing people to Champaign-Urbana that my students
would otherwise not interact with blows my mind and it makes my job so much easier
because it means that my kids are being taken care of by the community and not
just by us inside that building. It’s a really nice safe place to come
after school when you don’t really have a place to go or you just
want to come here for fun. Without this library, I wouldn’t be able to
check out books, hang out with my friends, look at movies, attend awesome events that in
another place you’d have to pay money for, so that really gets me happy. If it means that once a year I have to pay taxes in order to support the library and if that’s what the library is going to do then I definitely want to pay my taxes.
I don’t want to get out of it, I don’t want it reduced, I don’t want it back. Anyone who doesn’t think that this is a gold mine doesn’t know what gold is.

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