Blogger Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers committee

Children’s Librarians are Experts at Designing Innovative Services!

Children’s librarians are heroes!  Since I have been doing this work, I’ve met many champions in the profession—people like YOU who go the extra mile to make sure that all your patron bases are being served.  Since serving on the Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers Committee, I have seen librarians come up with exemplary programs to serve incarcerated youth, indigenous tribes, refugee families, and children in a low-income housing authority just to name a few. I’m sure there are more innovative programs that we need to hear about. Maybe it’s yours, but you need a little money to get started. 


The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and the Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers Committee (LSUCTC) are now accepting online applications for the 2018 Light the Way: Library Outreach to the Underserved grant. This $3,000 grant, made possible by Candlewick Press in honor of Newbery Medalist and Geisel Honoree author Kate DiCamillo, will go to a library conducting exemplary outreach to underserved populations through a new program or an expansion of work already being done.

The winning project should be well thought-out, appropriate to the target population, doable, and replicable by other libraries. Each applicant will be judged on the following:

  • Project Information- The outline should include goals, measures of success, a timeline with action steps, and how the project will be documented.
  • Target Population- Descriptions of the community served by your library, including a concise economic and demographic profile. Detail community benefits, outreach, and the various players involved in promoting the program to the underserved population in your area.

Please read about last year’s grant recipient here.

Applicants must be members of the American Library Association. Deadline for submissions is December 1, 2018. For more information about the award requirements and submitting the online application please visit the ALSC/Candlewick Press “Light the Way” Grant Web page.

Contact the chairs of the Library Service to Underserved Children and Their Caregivers Committee, Jason Driver or Erin Lovelace, with questions at

Jason Driver is an Early Literacy Specialist Librarian at the Chicago Public Library. He enjoys storytelling, playing chess and raising his rambunctious girls among other things. He is the current co-chair of the Library Service to the Underserved Children and their Caregivers Committee.

This post addresses the ALSC Core Competencies: Outreach and Advocacy, Programming Skills, and Commitment to Client Group.

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