Blogger Liaison with National Organizations

“Doing Good Together”, Family Service Fairs and Community Partnerships

Thanks to Tami Lee, one of my fabulous colleagues at Ramsey County Library in Saint Paul, Minnesota, I recently learned about a national nonprofit called, “Doing Good Together” whose mission dovetails nicely with the work that we do in libraries. The organization works to connect families with volunteer and service opportunities to create a kinder, more connected world. From their website: “Our mission is unique and deeply layered. We provide tools to both families and organizations to help them raise compassionate, engaged children. Our innovative activities, resources, and support help make empathy and “giving back” a natural part of life’s early lessons.” Their organization has different levels of engagement, which makes them a great partnership for libraries to work with. Libraries can hire or partner with them directly, use the Doing Good Together Family Service Fair eBook guidelines to build own their own event, or buy their pre-made Compassion Kits, which…

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

Pack in the fun with Nature Backpacks

The heady months of summer are winding down, yet you still may be experiencing an influx of young people in the library. While this is a fun time to see so many new faces in the library, the nice weather creates an opportunity to partner with your local forest service or park service departments to encourage families to explore the outdoors into the upcoming autumn. 

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…