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Posts Tagged ‘community engagement’

Magazine Feature July/August 2019

Issues That Matter: Forums Build Civic Engagement

Sno-Isle Libraries (SIL) debuted Issues That Matter forums in 2010
as a series of community discussions and debates. These forums convene
residents from communities across the entire two-county library
service area (Snohomish County and Island County, WA) to engage in
important community conversations on relevant, high-profile topics.
Through these events, the library extends its neutral stance to enable
civil, open discussion on controversial topics with the guidance of
several panelists and a program moderator. Sessions are recorded
and streamed live on Facebook. The forums connect citizens in the
communities we serve with local experts, stakeholders, and community
leaders.

Magazine Feature July/August 2019

A Civic Initiative About Information: The Civic Lab At Skokie Public Library

Since its inception in summer 2016, the Civic Lab has offered information and thought-provoking activities to support dialogue and engagement on issues that affect our community. At its heart, the Civic Lab—a team of library staff members from a variety of departments, working in a variety of positions—is about connecting community members of all ages with the information and resources they need to first understand issues that they care about and that are impacting the community, and then, with that foundation of understanding based on reputable information, make up their own minds about how they feel about an issue, and whether and how they want to act as a result.

Fun Palace notice that library will be noisy during event

“I Didn’t Expect to See That at the Library” – Fun Palace Engages Community

On October 7, 2017, the Huntington City-Township Public Library became the first public library in the United States to host a Fun Palace. During the weekend, the library was filled with activities led by community members. At different stations inside and outside the library building, you could learn how to start your family tree, paint like Jackson Pollock, discover Dungeons & Dragons, ballet, ride a bike, cross-stritch, hula dance, stretch your body, decorate cakes, paint rocks, and much, much more. According to Devon Henderson, the library “ended up with 68 volunteers, 24 unique activity stations and over 500 in attendance.”

ALA Spectrum Scholars-Dispatches from PLA 2018

Building Meaningful Relationships through Community Engagement

At the 2018 PLA Conference, Maggie Killman, Youth Community Engagement Librarian, and Gabriel Venditti, Community Engagement Librarian, gave a presentation called Building Meaningful Relationships through Community Engagement, in which they discussed the importance of increasing community engagement by creating more adaptive public services.

The Association for Rural and Small Libraries logo

Libraries as Vibrant Community Hubs: A Report From the ARSL Conference

The Association for Rural and Small Libraries recently held their tenth annual conference. More than 550 librarians gathered to discuss issues and concerns unique to libraries in sparsely populated areas. Next year’s conference will be in Springfield, Illinois. 

apples

Food Center: Meeting Food Insecure Patrons Outside the Library

As a library, we have been long time supporters of our local food center. However, it wasn’t until the past few years that we actively began to provide programming at the center. It started as one of many places we were looking to try to share information about what the library had to offer, but it turned into something different over time.

illustration of food truck type vehicle with books in window

Pop-Up Libraries: Meeting Patrons Where They Are

The Wichita, Kansas, Public Library has a great idea: if the people won’t come to you, go to the people. Similar in concept to cities that are providing libraries in housing developments, the idea is a simple one. Readers may have forgotten how much they like to read, and just need to be reminded. So twice a month during the summer, a librarian takes a vintage trunk filled with a couple of dozen books down to the Pop-Up Urban Park (downtown Wichita) at lunchtime and offers literature to go with the food truck cuisine.

solar eclipse

Get Your Library In On the Eclipse Action

Public libraries have a tremendous opportunity to supplement STEM programming with the event — before and after.

kids sitting on a lawn eating apples

Summer Lunch: Partnering with Community Agencies

There are plenty of libraries around the country who are fortunate to be able to provide food to children in need during the summer. However, if your library that isn’t able to, it doesn’t mean you can’t be part of feeding children’s minds while someone else fills their stomachs!

sip and spell

Library Spells Success with Sip & Spell Event

How do you attract more readers to your library? Let them show off their dictionary know-how in a head-to-head spelling competition!

diverse people standing around a globe

ESL Programs Position Libraries as Welcoming Places

The communities libraries serve are becoming more diverse. In seeking to move beyond the tired label of being “just about books,” libraries must engage with these communities through outreach and engagement.

several red chairs

Library Partnerships Bring People Together

Thanks to the clear divisions in our country, there has recently been a lot of talk about bringing people together. In the spirit of that call for camaraderie, I’ve been reflecting on the opportunities the library has to partner with others on programs and efforts.

Why Make? An Exploration of User-Perceived Benefits of Makerspaces

During the last decade, technology has provided us with tremendous individual power, and this has encouraged the development of what is being called the Maker Movement. This movement is having a profound effect upon the manufacturing sector as well as the individual’s ability to explore and share creative ideas using computer-aided design and an online network of collaborators. In response to interest in participating in self-directed projects that utilize digital tools and knowledge, libraries and other community-based organizations have created makerspaces. These facilities provide users with the physical tools and space to pursue their interests and collaborate on projects. Educational research shows that this type of activity can facilitate learning, but little is known about what the users themselves perceive to be the benefits of access to makerspaces. This exploratory study examines users’ perceptions of their experience in public library makerspaces.

november calendar page

November is National Novel Writing Month

It’s November and that means National Novel Writing Month is here again! Participating in National Novel Writing Month, or as it is more commonly known, NaNoWriMo, is a great way for public libraries to support aspiring authors.

Yoga class

Promoting Health and Fitness Literacy at the Library

Sonoma County Libraries offers fitness and healthy cooking classes in its Healthy Living at your Library series as a way to promote health and fitness literacy. This is a growing trend to look out for!