Reaching more readers is the driving force behind OverDrive and their library partners. In response to requests from industry leaders to leverage their digital collections to reach more readers, OverDrive is providing a variety of tools and services to help librarians provide “Access for All.”
“OverDrive is prioritising services for libraries to address community challenges including workforce development, health and wellness, legal aid and all literacy issues,” OverDrive Founder and CEO Steve Potash said. “Our goal is for public libraries to leverage their investment in their digital collections and materials to efficiently reach and engage underserved audiences.”
Providing “Access for All” means:
- Content access affordability: We offer libraries the ability to stretch their collection development further by offering flexible and extensive lending models. Librarians can maximize their budget by reaching more readers through OverDrive Max and other cost-effective access models offering flexible options.
- Students and children: Libraries continue to seek efficient solutions to reach and support the students and children in their service area. Public Library CONNECT enables students to safely access their local public library’s ebooks and audiobooks (in addition to their school’s) through the Sora student reading app. This service is now in 31,000 schools worldwide, allowing 18 million students secure access to their public library digital collections using their student credentials.
- Digital book clubs: To bring community together, digital book clubs are regularly hosted throughout public libraries with titles from regionally local authors in New Zealand and Australia. These offer not only access to titles but a shared reading experience for library communities.
- English language learners: Over the past three years, OverDrive has donated millions of books to thousands of libraries and schools worldwide. Based on the growing catalog of English language learning materials including Read-Alongs, audiobooks and Kanopy Kids videos, the company is working to assemble new curated and bundled options for those learning English.
- Accessibility needs: Improved Libby app features for those with visual impairment, dyslexia and other disabilities. These include screen reader support, customizable ebook reader display and adjustable text size.
- Diverse collections: Diversity Audits and OverDrive Marketplace curation tools can drive inclusive collections to support initiatives around diversity and building collections that support the local interests of patrons.