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Carnegie Library asks Boulder residents for their COVID stories

A transparent globe with protrusions jutting out represents an artistic rendering of COVID-19 at the molecular level.
Courtesy of Distance Gallery
Years have passed since the COVID-19 pandemic first surged in 2020. Now, the Carnegie Library For Local History is asking Boulder County residents to share their experiences from the pandemic.

The Carnegie Library For Local History is asking Boulder County residents to share their experiences from the COVID-19 pandemic through a questionnaire. Archivist Nicole Docimo joined us to talk about it.

Docimo was inspired to start the project at the beginning of the COVID pandemic when she began to get requests for records from a past pandemic.

"In March of 2020 we started getting requests for information about the 1918 Spanish flu, I think because people were just hungry for stories of how people survived previous pandemics," Docimo told KUNC. "What I found in looking for materials in our archive about the 1918 flu is we just really didn't have many items."

It was the summer of 2021 when Docimo says she and her colleagues "really started thinking, 'what can we do to collect a larger set of stories to really tell all the different stories of the pandemic, of how different people survived the lockdown?'"

Docimo said the project is not exclusively about the negative impacts of COVID.

"We have a question about silver linings of the pandemic. There is a really great sense of community that came out of people trying to find ways to make it through the difficult times. If there is a future pandemic, people will want to know about this," Docimo said. "Sometimes we see our strength as a community in how we deal with challenges. I think that's really obvious in the stories that we're receiving."

The last day to participate in the COVID Community Stories Questionnaire is Friday, March 3, 2023.

As a reporter and host for KUNC, I follow the local stories of the day while also guiding KUNC listeners through NPR's wider-scope coverage. It's an honor and a privilege to help our audience start their day informed and entertained.
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