Introduction to Sandwell Libraries
Libraries are safe, inclusive, modern, sustainable community hubs with a strong family and community focus, delivering services and activities that local people want, in locations that are convenient for them and at times that meet their needs.’
Through a network of 19 libraries, a Mobile and Outreach Library Service and our Archives Service residents within Sandwell have access to a wide range of services, resources and activities. Our work within the Library Service directly supports Sandwell’s Vision 2030 as well as meeting the Libraries Connected national Universal Offers.
- Libraries promote reading, for pleasure and for information, as an essential skill to improve life chances.
- Libraries provide spaces for formal and informal learning, and offer opportunities to improve life skills through volunteering, work experience and apprenticeships. They support digital inclusion and work innovatively with partners to deliver service transformation. All libraries have free to access PCs and wifi and can offer support with accessing ICT.
- Libraries work in partnership with health providers to deliver services, resources, and activities that improve health and wellbeing.
- Libraries provide family activities and creative arts that bring different groups together. They support social cohesion and preserve and celebrate the diverse heritage and distinctiveness of Sandwell’s towns and neighbourhoods.
- Libraries work closely with parents and schools to offer services and activities that support the curriculum and improve literacy levels.
- Libraries are safe community hubs at the heart of their communities and are used by all sections of those communities, providing value for money for local residents
Or projects as part of the Better Mental Health funding are aimed at providing parents and carers of children under the age of 5 with a range of social activities. Our projects consist of Play Talk Read sessions and the Sandy Bear scheme.
Play Talk Read
- Interactive story sessions for families
- Aim to develop a love of reading
- Staff will showcase how to read stories together
- Sessions include a focus on early language development
- Sessions support parents and carers to engage with others to reduce social isolation
- Developed in partnership with the Quality Early Years Team
- Will run in 18 libraries across Sandwell on a weekly basis. Times and days will vary to ensure good coverage across the Borough and includes Saturdays
- Sandy Bear is a new membership and activity scheme designed by the Library Service in partnership with the Quality Early Years Team
- The scheme will be run in partnership with Children’s Centres
- Scheme is open to children under the age of 5 who will be given a ‘challenge’ card.
- The challenges are designed to encourage attendance at Children’s Centre and Library activities.
- Aims to increase literacy and language development through the use of books and resources
- Supports parents and carers through engagement with social activities both in the Libraries and Children’s Centres.
- Libraries will hold Sandy Bear Storytimes for families to attend, and across the Borough sessions will run Monday – Sunday
How to sign up
Families can sign up by visiting any library in Sandwell and speaking to a member of staff.
For more information on Sandwell Libraries please visit
Facebook – SandwellLibraries
Twitter – @sandwelllibs