Vending machine for books debuts in local courthouse

Effingham Public Library was the recipient of one of Better World Books 2016 Literacy Grants. The grant made it possible for the library to place a free book vending machine in the Effingham County Courthouse to give the community better access to free books. The vending machine is complete and was recently installed in the courthouse. The Effingham Library sent us the below update:

Children helping ready books for the new Book Box

The Book Box Vending Machine was officially installed at the Effingham County Courthouse on Friday, September 23, 2016.

Wow! It has proved to be incredibly popular!

In just four weeks of use, Effingham Public Library has already shared more than 492 books with the Effingham community.

The Effingham Daily News ran a front-page story about the Book Box with its Friday, September 23, 2016, edition, and business has been brisk ever since!

The vending machine is already popular only four weeks into its arrival.

Below are reports and comments from staff email as we refill the box:

  • After one full week in its new home, we have already moved approximately 286 books!
  • We’ve received lots of great comments about the Book Box and everyone who passes by it seems really excited about it!
  • Hopefully, we’ll start to level out now that the Box has been there for a week and we can start to figure out a steady system for maintaining it. We’ve got some great volunteers started on wrapping and staff is slowly being trained on how to re-stock.
  • It is wonderful! Each time I have been over to fill the machine, there are so many great and grateful comments! They say they really like it and enjoy it…staff, customers, and those that are entering the building and area for the first time. It is really cool to see their faces when they do a “double take” and smile when they see what it is! Like you say, if you want to feel good just go over to fill the box and there are all kinds of “happy”.
J&J Ventures of Effingham, IL helped the library deliver the vending machine to its new home.

Another question that people have been asking is about the story behind the Book Box. They have a really hard time believing it’s free, which is interesting.

The story has been filmed by the local television station, WCIA. We haven’t been told when the story will be shared on their WCIA Living segment, but it should be within the next month.

It’s just as exciting to fill the vending machine as it is to receive books.

This project has been an amazing, welcome addition to our community.

There is already discussion among staff of securing funding for a second Book Box that we could host at our local hospital. However, for now, we are very happy to work toward keeping up with refilling our first site at the Effingham County Courthouse.

Thank you to Better World Books for this wonderful opportunity to meet the literacy needs of those in our community!

This project was a perfect fit!

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