Oles Honchar Kherson Regional Universal Scientific Library is one of the largest information centers in the southern region of Ukraine. Every year, about 40,000 residents of the city and the province make use of the services provided by the library. The reading halls can accommodate more than 600 readers while the large service areas can assist yet another 300 readers, all at the same time. For their use, the collection has approximately 1 million documents, which include publications in 45 different languages. The repository is designed to hold 1,200,000 volumes.
With the intent of supporting the operations of the library and to lobby its interests, the Honorable Guardianship Council was created under the authorization of the head of Kherson's regional government administration in 2002.
The library also has tomes printed in different types of media. Moreover, there is a collection of vinyl recordings, compact disks, diafilms, slides, film and video movies. The collection also contains manuscripts, microfilms, diskettes and CD-ROMs.
The most treasured segment of the book respository is its collection of folklore, local publications, and books with various insignia. This collection has publications signed by the author, soviet prints, contemporary releases of works by academicians from the fields of science, culture and literature, a collection of printed miniatures, and graphic art.
A substantial technical foundation supports the new level of quality of the organization's work through modern methods of internal and external communication, sound and visual information, and computerization of the majority of library-bibliographic processes.
Today, thanks to the financial support of the US Embassy in Ukraine, the International Foundation "Vidrodzhenya", the International Charitable Foundation FORCE, the Royal Norwegian Consultate in Ukraine, Canadian-Ukrainian association Friends of Ukraine, and the cooperation of other national and international organizations in the community, the library created the following departments that are successfully operating to this day: an Internet center, an Information and Resource Center, "Window on America" named in honor of John Paul Jones, Canadian-Ukrainian library center, a center for People with Special Needs, a European Information center, an Ecological Information Center and also a Regional Information center. Thanks to the help of the group "United Center", a computer center was opened in the reading hall where readers have the ability to do research for necessary information through the Internet.
The library coworkers created an internet project that focuses on the region's local lore called "Khersonshchina: Time, Events and People". There were also two other projects that created informational portals called "Kavun" and "Artkavun" which display various types of information about the region of Kherson. The active collaboration of the library with international organizations and charitable foundations encourages the introduction of new projects. In 2010, work began on the development of the extensive "Global Libraries - BookCrossings - Ukraine". Within its framework, a regional learning center for all library workers in the province was opened at the library.
Significant attention is given to the comfort of readers while they work in the library. Quiet reading halls, modern interiors, suitable furniture, and the presence of automated work places for access to electronic library databases assure the readers of conditions for effective work. Readers also have access to a sound recording studio, listening stations equipped with record players and earphones and WIFI at the library. At the request of the readers, library specialists provide consultations, xerox copying, scanning and copying of information to electronic media.
Other services available to readers are: literary circles "Kulisheva's Spring" and "Literary Drawing Room", a club for admirers of the arts "Lyra", two clubs "Heal Yourself" and "Fresh Outlook", and a music room "Honchar Drawing Room". The library regularly invites residents and guests of the city to attend their exhibits (books, arts and photography), literary-musical evenings and other cultural-artistic offerings. For all who are interested, tours of the library are offered and include visits to the "Museum of Books" and introductions to literary news. For those that have access to Internet, the library website has created a blog "Literary Compass" where thoughts can be shared with others on literary topics and discuss literary developments.