Canadian Library Will Loan Out People as Well as Books



For centuries the public library has been a great source of knowledge through books. Now one library in Canada is opening up the scope of how you acquire knowledge at the library; by offering up skilled people. Why read a history book when you can talk to a historian?

The program is far less insidious than it sounds. The library has assembled a group of volunteers with particularly interesting skills or histories, and has a system in place to put these people in touch with knowledge seekers. If you’re looking for someone to practice your German with, or to ask about their experiences during the Great Depression, or their struggle with illness, the library will put you in touch with an appropriate individual. Once in touch, you can meet in the library’s cafe, keeping the entire operation under one roof.

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Danish libraries have done something like this for a couple of years - under the heading "Borrow a prejudice", allowing people to talk to a lesbian or stuff like that. Worked pretty well, I believe.
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