The Loaner Laptop program was officially launched on June 1, 2021. Friends of Valley of the Tetons Library, with help from a $3,000 2021 Competitive Grant, provided 5 brand new laptops – each with its own messenger bag, wireless mouse, and thumb drive to Valley of the Tetons Library as an expansion of their service to the community. Initially, Valley of the Tetons Library’s policy allowed for a 24-hour checkout, but due to patron feedback, they updated their policy to allow for a 7-day checkout to coincide with their Hotspot Loaner Program. Chris Johnson, E.D. for Valley of the Tetons Library, commented that “many libraries that let their patrons use laptops, don’t let the computers leave their premises. Certainly, there are risks, but the need and benefits to the community are greater.”
For one of their patrons, it meant the difference in becoming an Advocate for Family Safety Network or not:
“I need to borrow a laptop to complete an online training course (40 hrs) for certification as a victim advocate. I’m currently using a 10 yr old tablet which is proving difficult. Most of my coursework needs to be done at night after the library closes”
“I’m signed up for an online class and my computer died yesterday, so having a laptop available is awesome! Thank you!”
In a recent editorial in the Washington Post, “The Golden Age of Libraries Dawns Again,” the author mentions that “some are even lending out laptops and WiFi devices.” Teton Valley is lucky to be ahead of the curve to help community members gain valuable access to technology thanks to Tin Cup Challengers!