Library moves forward in Reopening Plan

September 17, 2020 in

Volunteers return to library facilities, assisting with behind-the-scenes duties

Josephine Community Library moved forward in its Reopening Plan this week, entering Chapter 3 and inviting volunteers to return to all four branch facilities in Grants Pass, Illinois Valley, Williams, and Wolf Creek.

Chapter 3 of the library’s COVID-19 reopening plan integrates volunteers back by department to assist with behind-the-scenes library operations.

“Before the pandemic, library volunteers worked about 500 hours a week, representing 13 full-time employees,” said Library Director Kate Lasky. “Volunteers are the heart of our library and we are excited to welcome them back.”

The library system which serves Josephine County relies heavily on volunteer support. Since the Office of the Governor issued Executive Order 20-12 this past March, volunteers have been unable to return to the facilities. This past week, library staff finalized renovations to support physical distancing and increased foot traffic, and ensure the safety or both volunteers and staff during the pandemic.

Over the past six months, a staff of 15 part-time and full-time employees have been busy providing virtual programming and digital services to the community, doing the work of hundreds of volunteers among the four library branches. Curbside pick-up services began in June.

Online library services such as instant online library card registration, wildfire resources, ebooks, audiobooks, virtual entertainment, and learning tools for all ages are available through the library website. Internet and WiFi will remain accessible outside all four library branches 24/7 and laptops and WiFi hotspots are available for checkout. Library staff and volunteers are also available for technical assistance by phone at all four branches during regular service hours.

For more information about the library’s reopening plan and digital services, follow this link, send an email to, or call 541-476-0571.