Media libraries of the Foix-Varilhes agglomeration: a modern offer to attract all the public

the essential
The network of media and playrooms in the Foix-Varilhes conurbation is particularly active. Over time it has developed an ambitious digital offer to try to stick to the expectations of the population as much as possible.

With a network of 13 media libraries and two playrooms, the agglomeration of the village of Foix-Varilhes has an ambitious policy in this sector. Over time the offer (free for all) has diversified and has been able to enhance digital technology to get as close as possible to the expectations of the population. Impacted by restrictions related to the health crisis, the network is back in good shape with over 5,000 active members enrolled in 2021.

A common catalog containing 175,000 documents

This network has the advantage of connecting the entire territory of the agglomeration. While the larger structures are managed by agents – 18 in number – others, smaller, operate thanks to the constant commitment of 70 volunteers. “They manage the reception of the public and their own acquisition budget, explains Julien Moreau, animator of the network. We provide them with the necessary technical support. If the workforce is stable, the needs have nevertheless been identified at the level of the Saint-Pierre-de-Rivière facility. “If people want to get involved, that’s possible. You must be interested in culture, but not only. I also appreciate exchanges with members. “

Because if some people know immediately what they are looking for, others like to be guided. And they are spoiled for choice. The 13 media libraries, each of which chooses the acquisition, however, have a common catalog containing almost 175,000 documents. Books, CDs, magazines but also games and lots of toys.

This rich collection, in which there is also a nice collection of heritage, comes from its own funds and in part from the Ariège departmental library. Furthermore, every year a real renewal work is carried out. By 2020, more than 7,000 new documents had been acquired. “The degraded media is mostly thrown away, but we are currently signing an agreement with the Ressourcerie de Foix to resell what can be,” adds the network facilitator.

And to allow all residents to use them, booking solutions are possible directly on the site. From then on, a shuttle can take the desired document directly to the media library of their choice. An interesting offer since in 2021 this shuttle hired 14,474 confidential documents across the entire network.

A wide digital offer, sometimes overlooked

In addition to material documents, the network has a very broad and sometimes little known digital offer. In particular, there is a video on demand service linked to ArteVOD and Les Yeux Doc (specialized in documentaries). The subscription provides six free downloads per month. Here, too, past confinements have given a boost to this offer, which is now a real success.

Another interesting digital offer: online printing. With nearly 800 unlimited titles available, this digital kiosk provides access to national and regional press, including numerous trade journals. There is something for everyone.

Finally, the latest offer launched two years ago is self-training. This online system allows you to train on many topics: tutoring, multimedia, highway code and permits, sports, language learning, etc. “We launched it at the time of confinement and it worked well there too. In 2020, more than 3,000 connections were registered. A device that deserves to be known.

Animate me a story: continue this week

Very active, the network of media libraries in the village of Foix-Varilhes multiplies its activities throughout the year. Regular meetings – children’s meeting, film screenings, etc. – but also more punctual. What to offer a nice showcase to the network and why not encourage new registrations. Also, right now, the “Animate me a story” operation continues. Today the postcard creation workshops will be held at 10:00 at the Varilhes media library and at 14:00 in Verniolle. On May 4th, the Bachi-Bouzouk company will unveil its animated shadow show at 3pm, in the Isabelle-Sandy room in Foix. On May 5th it will be the turn of the Espante company at the multipurpose hall of Saint-Martin-de-Caralp, at 3pm. Finally, on May 7, the amour amour amour group will present “La fonde de K.” at the church of Burret, at 4pm. Note that the “Rose or Blue” show originally scheduled for this Saturday has been postponed.

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