Library and Information Week 2018 – Finding Yourself in the Library

This week is Library and Information week 21-27 May and the theme for this year is ‘Find Yourself in the Library’.

As a librarian here at State Library of Queensland I often find myself here, from about 9-5 Monday through Friday in fact.

All jokes aside though, this theme for me is not just about physically finding yourself in the space and engaging with the wide range of material we hold in our collections but instead about discovering something that you may not have known about yourself.

Whether that is designing and making something at The Edge that you didn’t think you were capable of until you attended a workshop, rediscovering the joys of reading with your kids through our classic children’s books, or realising that you have a previously unknown passion for the science behind the formation of black holes after causally picking up a New Scientist while waiting for your mother to finish browsing Gourmet Traveler.

Whatever it may be, the library has the resources to help you indulge your interests and help you continue to learn in a variety of ways.

For me, our library services allowed me to not only learn about myself but about my history and that of my family. I have only been working with State Library for a year and a half, but in two months I plan to move to London with my wife and start a new chapter of our life together. I will be sad to leave this job as it has given me so many wonderful opportunities but I am also looking forward to experiencing life in another country, especially considering it is where my father was born.

Thanks to my British ancestry, I am able to apply for an Ancestry visa that allows my wife and I to live and work in the UK for 5 years. In order to apply for this however, I was required to provide proof of my ancestry, which in this case is a copy of my grandfather’s birth and marriage certificates held by the British Births, Deaths and Marriage registry in England. These are not documents that my father had access to so I needed to locate the necessary document identification numbers and place an order for them online. This is where the State Library once again provided me with another excellent opportunity and the resources I required to solve my problem through the library subscription to Ancestry.com. Using this database, my father and I were able to learn more about our family than we had known before. We were also able to easily discover the numbers that I needed to accurately place the order for the certificates that will change my life forever and allow my wife and I to begin the journey of a lifetime.

I found my grandfather, and in finding him I will discover something new about myself.

More Information

Library and Information Week 21-27 May 2018 – https://www.alia.org.au/liw

The Edge SLQ – http://edgeqld.org.au/

One Search catalogue – http://onesearch.slq.qld.gov.au

Ask Us service – http://www.slq.qld.gov.au/services/ask-us

Will Wood

Librarian, Content and Client Services