After reading the headline, you may be thinking, “A library card…what’s the big deal? How is a library card really going to change my life?” Well, this tiny little card that’s small enough to fit in your wallet really is big enough to change your life. I know it sounds cliché, but your library card is the key to unlocking the doorway of knowledge.
Did you know…
- 87% of children in Michigan whose parents do not have a high school degree live in low-income families. Source: Reading Works Detroit
- In January 2011, the unemployment rate among individuals without a high school diploma was more than twice the rate of those with a diploma. Source: U.S. Dept of Labor
- Approximately 32,400 students did not graduate from Michigan’s high schools in 2010; the lost annual earnings in Michigan for that class alone are more than $380 million. Source: Alliance for Excellent Education
Having access to a library not only benefits the community in general but imagine what it could do for kids that find themselves thinking about dropping out of school. Strong, vibrant public libraries are the cornerstone of communities. They are the one place where knowledge and opportunity are available to all, regardless of means.
A 2009 poll conducted for the American Library Association found that 96% of respondents agreed that public libraries play an important role in giving everyone a chance to succeed because it provides free access to materials and resources. The library is a place for both parents and kids to access the Internet, re-discover reading, and become more engaged in their community.
Today’s library card does more than it used to!
You don’t have to be at the library to use your card. Several services and books are available from wherever you have access to the Internet – home, work, a coffee shop, etc… Our collection of digital books is large and continues to grow. You can also sign-in to your account and do a number of other things: put stuff on hold, freeze a hold, keep a list of movies you’d like to watch, update your email address or phone number, or use one of our databases!
Your library card is for more than just books. I’m always surprised to discover this, but not everyone knows you can checkout movies, music, magazines, and audiobooks from the library. Some of my favorite magazines include Real Simple, Threads Magazine, and Knit Simple. It would cost me nearly $80 every year if I subscribed to all three of these magazines, but I save that money by checking them out from the library.
Your library card expires. Not many folks know this, but library cards – just like your credit or debit cards — come with expiration dates. CADL cards are good for three years and then must be renewed. If it’s been a while since you’ve used your card, and you’re not sure when it expires, call or visit your local CADL branch. If you have an online account already set-up, you just need to sign-in to find out when your expiration date is. Renewing your card is easy too. Bring your photo ID and proof of current address to any branch and you’ll be issued a new card in a matter of minutes!
If it’s been a while since you’ve used your CADL card, I invite you to re-discover all the great things you can do with it. It truly is big enough to change your life!
- Liz B., CADL Marketing Director