Hello everyone! My name is Toni Bernardi and I am Head of Children and Youth Services at the San Francisco Public Library. I am also the new Chair of the ALSC Advocacy and Legislation Committee and face the daunting task of following the amazing Penny Markey who spearheaded significant changes for the committee over the past couple of years.
As this is my first blog post to all of you, I want to use it to talk about my goal and to seek some input from you.
Advocacy can be a scary word, often because we interpret it as highly political. Many of us shrink from viewing ourselves in that light. But according to my handy Merriam Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, advocacy is simply the act or process of supporting a cause or proposal. In our case, the cause is providing the best possible library resources and services for children. Basically, my goal for this year is to continue to promote the idea that everyday advocacy is not intimidating and that you are practicing it all the time even if you don’t label it as such. In addition, I would like to bring together suggestions and ideas that you can draw upon to help you realize that you are an advocate and that make you say, “I can do that,” or, “I do that all the time.” To make that possible, I need input from you. So, here are some questions:
- Has this Blog helped you view any of what you do as advocacy when you did not previously see it as such?
- Have you used any of the information or ideas to help you advocate?
- If so, what were the results?
- Do you have some effective advocacy tips to share with everyone?
- Where should the blog go in the future? Should there be changes or is it helpful as it is?
I must confess that this kind of electronic communication is not my comfort zone (Penny assures me that it gets easier), so I hope that you will weigh in with comments, suggestions and ideas so that I don’t feel alone in electronic space over this year. I look forward to hearing from you!