Library in Jefferson Regional Medical Center packs a lot into five-shelf bookcase
Families waiting for loved ones now can use a new library at Allegheny Health Network — Jefferson Hospital.
And they don't have to return the books.
Jan Reschenthaler, director of Jefferson Hills Public Library, and programming director Jane Milner have created a small literary oasis at the Coal Valley Road hospital. A five-level wooden bookcase contains literature – ready for the reading and the taking.
In the spirit of the Little Free Library organization founded in Wisconsin in 2009 by Todd Bol and Rick Brooks, the women use a simple rule: take a book, leave a book. Return it at your convenience or pass it along to another reader.
The Wisconsin men were inspired, as their website says, by Andrew Carnegie's founding of 2,509 free public libraries in the 1900s. Carnegie's name still is a constant in library circles here in Pittsburgh.
After they heard about the idea at a state librarians conference, the pair were about “plain old community service,” Reschenthaler said.
“This is the perfect presence of our library in the hospital,” she said.
They connected with Phyllis Boykin and Candy Williams in the hospital's volunteer services department to place the books that have been donated by those who know about the library project and the many who donate to the library's book sale.
The library opened on Feb. 3.
“We waited for a snowstorm to do it,” Reschenthaler said.
Located outside the elevator on the hospital's second floor, readers can find best-sellers, chapter books, children's picture books and more. Many visitors often sit in that area waiting for family or friends to return from outpatient therapy.
Milner and Reschenthaler said if the library is successful, they may try to open other locations in Jefferson Hills.
And while the bookshelf supports readers in a small space, the library's newly-designed website offers an easier read via the Internet.
Library technical director Maureen Edinger helped to strategize when Reschenthaler and Milner began meeting with a representative from a design firm. Their website, created 15 years ago, seemed outdated.
“Now, we have a new look with updated graphics and colors,” Edinger said, “and we're more user friendly.”
The custom-made header shows the green hills of the borough accented by the Jaguars' black-and-gold colors.
New programming is front and center, and patrons now have the opportunity to connect with the staff and each other through the blog section. There are lots of links that help visitors learn library policies, checkout the reference center and be introduced to the board of trustees.
Dona S. Dreeland is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5803 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Baldwin Borough woman awarded $5K for damages to apartment
- MRTSA staff able to train the ‘smart’ way with simulator
- Brentwood’s Noctis racing team makes final push for trip
- Baldwin settles lawsuit for $7,500
- Baldwin Community Day to have something for everyone
- Overgrown trees leave Brentwood residents frustrated
- Baldwin-Whitehall sells Lafferty building for $219K
- Whitehall Council OKs pickleball court
- Bus route to return to north Baldwin