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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Finding Help When You Don't Know Where To Turn

Libraries and librarians are very good at finding all kinds of things for people: an exciting new book to read, important government documents, driving directions and resume writing tips and the perfect DVD for a long weekend. Sometimes, however, your information needs are of a more serious, life-changing nature: substance abuse and addiction, an abusive or co-dependent relationship, problems with parenting, financial assistance and shelter during difficult economic times. Did you know you can turn to the library for guidance and referrals to help you weather life's most troublesome situations?

If you have ever entered the library through the municipal parking garage, you have passed by our large community display area. (That's a photo of it at the top of this post, along with samples of some of the posters.) If you've never stopped to browse in that area, you might not realize the valuable information available there. Much of it relates to cultural and artistic performances in the local area. Educational institutions such as Oakton and Harper community colleges display brochures about courses and special offerings.

You will also find posters and informational handouts about a variety of non-profit groups and social services. A sampling of the information available right now:
  • Support groups, self-help and professional help for those struggling with addiction and other psychological disorders;
  • Information on keeping your teenaged children safe and healthy;
  • Assistance for new immigrants and victims of human trafficking;
  • Information on Illinois' sex offender database;
  • Facts about cancer and networking groups for cancer survivors;
  • Courses for people who need to learn how to speak, read and write in English;
  • A wide variety of services for seniors and people with disabilities, including help with housing and transportation issues.
You may be fortunate enough to never need these referrals and services, but perhaps someone you know and care about is struggling and could use a helping hand. Another opportunity lies within these posters and brochures - the always ongoing need for volunteers to provide the services. So next time you enter the library, check out the display area, which is frequently updated. Could your organization use space to display information? Contact Public Information Assistant Margie Borris at (847) 376-2784 to find out if you are eligible for display space in the library.

Need assistance that isn't available in the display area or to supplement what you find there? Don't forget our friendly, professional reference staff. Visit the 4th floor desk any time the library is open. Can't make it to the library or have an information need after hours? From the library home page,, click on "ask a librarian live."You'll be connected with the Ask Away live reference service, available 24/7, 365 days a year.

Finding help is easier than you think. Let your new year be full of brighter mornings and peaceful nights - take advantage of assistance programs and social services that can transform your life and the lives of those you love.

1 comment:

  1. This posting is very valuable. Many folks don't know about the bulletin board and the free brochures in the breezeway. Thanks, Karen, for pointing this out!


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