The Oxford County Library (OCL) system is comprised of 14 branches across the County. They operate in rural communities and small towns like Ingersoll and Tillsonburg. While you have likely seen one of the OCL branches, what you might not realize is that each branch offers a variety of support services for both small businesses and individual customers.
Each branch has ample online resources that are perfect for small business owners, employees, and individuals looking to freshen up on their business or professional skills. They offer access to life-long learning resources with over 500 courses, business resources with over 100 courses on entrepreneurship, help with legal documents, and more. The best part is that OCL offers all of these resources completely free to users.
Besides being a go-to place to access resources, the local library branches often partner with various community organizations to help run events and programs. OCL is currently partnering on a series of networking events for Oxford Rural Entrepreneurs by hosting each event at one of their rural branches.
In addition, OCL works with Community Employment Services, Community Futures Oxford, public health, and other community organizations to help provide services or to act as a physical location in which programs can be run from.
Fun Fact: OCL staff love to help people. The Tavistock branch recently helped two entrepreneurs who needed assistance with Canada Post’s Snap Ship program. The entrepreneurs had never used the program, and quickly discovered they needed more information in order to complete the process. Joan Shepley, one of the Tavistock Library employees, quickly came to their aid. She helped them with the email set up, estimating the package weight, and even had a tape measure in her purse so she could get the exact dimensions of their package. After all was said and done, the two entrepreneurs left the library with their ready-to-ship package and greater knowledge of the resources available at the Tavistock Library.
This kind of interaction with people is one of the things that the staff at the OCL love most about their jobs. “I had lots of fun helping them. I assured them it wasn’t a problem and that I understand how tricky things can get sometimes,” said Joan.
“Go into one of our branches and just meet the staff. You’ll be amazed at what they can access and how that can help take your business to the next level,” says Lisa Miettinen, Chief Librarian at OCL.
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