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St. Louis County Library wins national medal for community service

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A push to bring vaccines to the people

Zaniyia Ingram, 13, browses through free books after receiving her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine at a COVID vaccination event at the Lewis & Clark branch of the St. Louis County Library in Moline Acres on Wednesday, May 26, 2021. Photo by Robert Cohen, rcohen@post-dispatch.com

The St. Louis County Library is one of only six recipients for a national honor, which recognizes the county's community outreach involving things from GrandPads for seniors to diapers for babies.

The 2022 National Medal for Museum and Library Service is the "nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities," according to the Institute of Museum and Library Services, which presents the medals. 

The honorees "demonstrated extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service."

The library said in its release: 

"Throughout the pandemic, St. Louis County Library (SLCL) has worked with a variety of community partners to provide critical resources to the region. Efforts included using branch parking lots to distribute over 2 million drive-thru meals with Operation Food Search, providing emergency diapers and period supply kits from the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank, and issuing thousands of Chromebooks and Wi-Fi hotspots to area students to assist with virtual learning, as well as providing GrandPad tablets to help older adults access technology and stay connected through the Digital Equity Initiative. SLCL teamed up with the St. Louis County Department of Public Health to offer free masks, COVID-19 testing, and weekly vaccine clinics at multiple branches. Additionally, SLCL partnered with several justice-involved organizations to provide a Tap In Center at the Florissant Valley Branch for individuals to receive legal assistance and connect with local support services during the COVID-19 pandemic."

The award will be presented next month in Washington, D.C. For a complete list of 2022 recipients and to learn more about the National Medal winners, visit The award will be presented at a ceremony next month in Washington, D.C.

The two other libraries so honored are in New Orleans and Wilmington, Delaware. Three museums rounded out the six medalists. For more information about their service, click here

St. Louis County Library is also ranked as a four-­star library in the 2021 Library Journal Index of Public Library Service. It is the only four-star library in the St. Louis region. The journal awards up to five stars, based on high per capita use in five areas: library visits, circulation, program attendance, circulation of electronic material and public Internet computer use.

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