Age-Friendly Library Initiative

Introduction

Bowdoinham’s Advisory Committee on Aging was awarded a grant from AARP to work with the Bowdoinham Public Library on its age-friendly initiative. Part of the grant money was to conduct a needs assessment of older residents to find out what they believed the strengths of the library were and to explore what people thought the library could do to be more aging friendly. As a result of the collaboration with the library (using money from the AARP grant), the library has been able to add more large print and audio books to their collection and is offering a series of technology classes specifically geared to older residents.

Summary of Library Survey findings:

You may download a summary of the results survey as a PDF  HERE.
Download the full final report as a PDF HERE.
Of the 697 surveys distributed to Bowdoinham residents aged 60 and above, 305 were returned for a return rate of 43.8%. Here is a summary of the results:
About two in three of the people who answered the survey use the library regularly. Why do they come?

Why do you use the library

The majority of people who said they were regular users of the library, came for more than one reason. A little more than half (55.8%, n=112) identified one or two reasons that they came to the library while almost half (44.2%, n=87) come to the library for three or more reasons.
Open-ended questions were asked that allowed people to tell us what people like about the library. In this word cloud, words that were most often mentioned are larger, words less often mentioned are smaller.

library-word cloud

People who don’t use the library frequently told us that they don’t use the library for the following reasons:

why don't you use the library

Open-ended questions were also asked that allowed people to tell us what people did not like about the library and what prevented them from visiting. Words that were most often mentioned are larger, words less often mentioned are smaller.

word-cloud

People were asked to tell us what they thought of the library space and of library services:

library building and service

Residents were asked what kind of programming they most wanted the library to offer.

I would like to see