Posts categorized "Libraries and the Environment" Feed

Heard of 'Social Enterprises' yet? You will soon.

If they can 're-brand', why can't we?

File this under the heading : Libraries are suffering under public sector cutbacks, but could social enterprise save the day? Maybe, maybe not.

Companies that are in business to make money see libraries as a lead-in to their other services,because "It offer(s) us a portal to expand our community projects, and at the same time we knew how well used the libraries were... we were already trying to address digital exclusion across the community, so it just seemed like a natural thing to do.", says Gavin Dunn of Eco Computer Systems, speaking about the company's involvement in libraries in Lewisham, UK.

(what is that person doing in that grey heap anyway?) ECO Communities March2013

After re-branding the libraries as community hubs, and the company name to Eco Communities, the business plan mirrors that of all social enterprise-run libraries since – it diversified. "Obviously you don't generate money out of loaning books, or the use of computers – they are all free", says Dunn. "But we are installing cafés in all the libraries and the local housing associations are funding us to provide work experience and training for long-term unemployed residents, and we have a pot of funding from Defra... We also have the contract with the council to sell old library books... on Amazon, and at book fairs." And, of course, it continues to sell recycled electrical equipment, with the library buildings providing effective showrooms and depots.

Wow, and to think we could be doing that at our Libraries; putting the money from 'Friends of the Library' book sales back into our funds to support ourselves!  Interesting.


Happy WORLD ENVIRONMENT DAY!


 

WED-5June-01

World Environment Day turns 40.  Happy Birthday. 

Wed 40 YR LOGO

 

 

 

 

Pictu for WED 40thUsing the Piictu application, you can take environmentally themed photos and instantly post them to an interactive stream of other images taken by people around the world.  The app is available for iOS.(Download the app here.) If you are already on Piictu, follow WorldEnvironmentDay and join in the fun.