North Central Regional Library has received two grants that will aid in the district’s response to Covid-19.
Both grants are funded by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act through the Washington State Library. One of the grants will provide 30 Wi-Fi hot spots and $12,000 to help pay for internet connectivity and 100 more wi-fi hotspots that don’t come with additional funds to pay for internet connection.
The second grant, for $3,000, will pay for washable keyboard covers that will be installed at libraries when they reopen to the public.
NCRL received a grant from Microsoft and the Public Library Association to expand Wi-Fi up to 600 feet around its 30 libraries in Chelan, Douglas, Grant, Okanogan and Ferry counties. The grant also comes with money to add 100 more wi-fi hotspots.
“NCRL is excited to reopen our libraries and ensure that we protect the health of our staff and patrons in the process,” said NCRL’s Executive Director Barbara Walters. “We have partnered with local vendors and sought out grant opportunities in order to effectively respond to health concerns and the needs of our communities. From expanding our WiFi to regularly sanitizing high use surfaces, we’ll be doing everything we can to make our libraries safe and enjoyable places to visit.”
Under the state’s phased reopening plan, libraries can open to the public starting in Phase 3. NCRL is actively working to prepare its spaces for the eventual reopening once all five counties in the library district are cleared to do so.