Blogger Liaison with National Organizations

Partnerships and Trust: A Perfect Pair

Working on the SPELL (Supporting Parents in Early Literacy through Libraries) project at the Denver Public Library, we had lots of partners and learned how to make partnerships effective.  Here’s a link to a list of the partners involved: My big takeaway? The most critical piece is Trust! Three Ways Trust Matters. Trust with your Team. Everyone that you work with needs to know and understand your work with partners. And support it. From directors to coordinators to library paraprofessionals and volunteers. When the whole team knows the value of your outreach and partnership, then you are supported and can move forward confidently. Often Friends of the Library organizations will offer support of your partnership when you make clear the goals and the value. So up and down the ladder, be a communicator of your work. Trust with your Partners. This means you know your partner and know that you…

Blogger Liaison with National Organizations

Collaborate with Local Organizations In The New Sharing Economy

Public libraries have been successfully demonstrating the benefits of a sharing economy way before businesses like Uber and Airbnb were on the scene. As pioneers of this operating model, libraries have set the standard for increasing access to resources and spaces for their individual users. The rise in popularity of the sharing economy presents libraries new opportunities for community partnerships.

Blogger Liaison with National Organizations

Food in the Library? An interview with Amanda Courie about Summer Food Programs

Over the past few years, there has been a growing awareness in public libraries that children within their service areas may not be getting enough to eat during the summer months when school breakfasts and lunches are unavailable. Many libraries have partnered with state and local organizations to address this “food insecurity” by offering summer food programs, but this may seem like a daunting enterprise for small, rural, and/or understaffed libraries. Caroline County Public Library, one of eight rural Maryland libraries that my organization serves, began offering a summer food program last year. I decided to interview Amanda Courie, Youth Services Manager, to find out how this kind of program can work on a smaller scale. Amanda, I understand that Caroline County Public Library is a small system. How many full time staff members are there? How many of them work in youth services? “We are a small system!  We…

Blogger Liaison with National Organizations

Partnering Through StoryWalks®

Looking for a project to generate new partnerships? How about a StoryWalk®? These deconstructed picture books, assembled page by page, onto signs along walking paths are ideal outreach activities. StoryWalk®, first developed by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, Vermont, promote literacy, a healthy lifestyle and so much more. Signage provides space for partner recognition on each page, too. For a permanent StoryWalk® installation, partnering with local government and parks and recreation departments are a good starting point. Prepare to speak about your project at a council meeting to gain support and funding. If the installation will be at a local park, the parks and recreation office will be key in maintenance of the project. These departments may have a website to help promote the project as well. StoryWalk® is flexible and mobile, too. Stakes or yard signs can be used to create temporary installations of a StoryWalk® project, suitable for festivals,…