St. Louis libraries are closed, but busier than ever supplying diapers, meals, digital branch

"There really is a limited supply of diapers. Even the diaper bank which is part of a national diaper bank network is struggling to get diapers."

Debbie Monterrey
April 10, 2020 - 11:34 am

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - St. Louis County Library has been playing a big role in the community during this COVID-19 pandemic, even though its branches are closed.

On Friday mornings at four county library branches (Florissant Valley, Lewis & Clark, Natural Bridge and Weber Road), those in need can drive up for needed diapers and period supply kits.

Related: Missouri public, charter schools will be closed for rest of this school year

"Since our inside spaces are closed, we immediately reached out to our community partners we're already working with, and we said, 'What if we did drive-thru meals, drive-thru diapers and drive-thru period supplies," says Library director Kristen Sorth.

Sorth says they're working with the St. Louis Area Diaper Bank, St. Louis Alliance for Period Supplies and Operation Food Search.

For diapers, the child has to be in the car.

"Diapers went the same way as toilet paper," explains Sorth. "And so there really is a limited supply of diapers. Even the diaper bank which is part of a national diaper bank network is struggling to get diapers."

Related: LISTEN: Mayor Krewson won't be closing St. Louis City's 109 parks anytime soon

In other library news, Sorth says they're not buying any physical books right now, putting all their resources into digital to ensure that people have access to the digital books, movies, magazines and other items they want. Phone calls are now forwarded to librarians at their homes to answer patron questions.

St. Louis County Library has launched a Digital Branch, and Sorth says they've seen a huge increase in web traffic, especially for people using their free learning programs and online classes. 

© 2020 KMOX (Entercom). All rights reserved