ALA Annual 2017

#alaac2017 Libraries Transform

My session on Libraries Transforming Communities was insightful and helped me learn a few tips to became a facilitator to promote change on an issue your community might need help. For example, you can ask yoursel: are your older preschoolers attending Storytimes kindergarten ready? Is your collection satisfying your community’s needs and reaching users? Is access to food compromising students’ achievement and ability to learn? And more importantly, should you as a librarian have a role in looking for solutions to these and other similar issues? Libraries Transform invite us to make a difference in our communities, but gathering input from our community members on how we can help make this difference might be difficult. Here you have a few tips to start your process.

  • Plan ahead and select a topic that might interest your community and present it to community organizations. Explain outcomes and ways to achieve these outcomes. Remember to ask for their participation.
  • Ask for staff support. You would like to have a Recorder. You need somebody taking notes and documenting your sessions.
  • Invite community members to a multi session gathering (meet once a week for a couple of weeks) to discuss this topic of interest.
  • Be intentional inclusive (everyone is welcome)
  • Learn what people are interested in discussing.
  • Make sure the role of your organization matches the change you are seeking and adapt your resources to those needs.
  • As a Facilitator, let your community drive the process, if they are not on board with change, it will not happen.
  • Have listening ears to capture the information.
  • Keep neutrality.

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