No Shortage of Ideas or People to Express Them: Starting Conversations

Posted by James Ochsner on March 08, 2017 at 2:25 PM

Sutter County Library, Yuba City, CA

The Action Guide really helped to get the conversation started as the Sutter County Library is just beginning plans to expand services to a community that relies heavily on an agricultural based economy. The community has often struggled with higher than average unemployment but enjoys a rich cultural heritage and a naturally beautiful environment. Many immigrants from Mexico, India, Pakistan and Afghanistan use the library’s Literacy Services classes as a resource for learning English, gaining citizenship, computer proficiency and accessing information. These classes have become a platform for adult learners and new citizens to form friendships that cross many national and cultural boundaries. Countless residents have been bringing their children to the library for generations. Students and job seekers are also regular users of services. Locally, the library has a fine reputation but there is still work to be done.


The main library branch is located in Yuba City, California with three rural branches in the farming communities of Live Oak, Sutter and Rio Oso. While working through the Action Guide, several groups were asked for input – Book Club members, library staff, Friends of the Library, as well as individual adult patrons and teens. The guide helped focus the conversations and produced an unexpected enthusiasm about the future of the library. It revealed that there is no shortage of ideas or people to express them. The Action Plan and its resources for planning and convening a public dialogue will play a major role in the near future, as Sutter County Library begins working with the city of Yuba City to improve and expand services in the coming year.

James Ochsner
Director of Services
Sutter County Library