Blogger Laura Schulte-Cooper

Successful Library Partnerships in Action

CAL Rewind, ALSC's Children & Libraries

Collaboration among organizations can build community awareness, enable resource sharing, and create positive synergy. Here is a sampling of Children and Libraries articles that highlight successful library partnerships. Click on each article link to read the full story about these creative relationships.

Community/Library Partnership

Article image: Together We're Stronger - library partnershipsTogether We’re Stronger: Helping Missoula’s Families All Under One Roof
by Pam Carlton

Libraries are the place to go for information and entertainment. Joining forces with community partners allows libraries to reach an even larger and more diverse population. Knowing this, the Missoula (MT) Public Library embraced an opportunity to collaborate with the Missoula Food Bank and University of Montana. The result: a dynamic learning center, EmPower Place, at the food bank facility.

This “all under one roof” partnership model allowed the three organizations to collaborate and contribute their unique strengths in the creation of the space. EmPower Place’s grand opening was held in 2017, and had more than two hundred visitors. Local neighborhood members and food bank clients were thrilled to have a fun and inviting space to bring their families.

Public Library/School Collaboration

article image: Pre-K Library PartnershipPre-K Partnership: How One Library and One Public School Increased Parent Engagement
by Kristen Rocha Aldrich

Inwood Library, a branch of New York Public Library, partnered with New York PS 98’s preschool classrooms, beginning in Fall 2015, to provide a family literacy workshop series. While students ate breakfast in the cafeteria, parents and caregivers enjoyed breakfast and a presentation by library staff and pre-K teachers. Topics covered included Creating a Literacy-Friendly Household, Free Neighborhood Resources, Language and Child Development, Math and Literacy, and Getting Ready for Kindergarten. At the end of each session, parents and caregivers received a bilingual handout on the topic covered.

During the 2015-16 school year, parent engagement for PS 98 pre-K classrooms increased by thirty-six percent, which the school attributed solely to the new partnership with NYPL.

Public/University Library Alliance

Article image: Community Art AcademyCommunity Art Academy: A Public/University Library Collaboration
by Bryna Bobick and Jennifer Hornby

In 2016, the Memphis (TN) Public Library and Information Center collaborated with The University of Memphis’s art education faculty and undergraduate students on the Community Art Academy. Twenty-three youth, ages nine to twelve, participated in a six-week program funded by the library’s Friends group. The goal was to provide participants a free, high-quality art program that supported literacy development and included visual arts and language arts integration every week.

The Community Art Academy was a success, allowing students from various schools to participate in art activities and foster friendships, and also giving art education students invaluable experience in teaching and lesson planning.

I hope you found this Rewind on library partnerships inspiring and helpful. Is your library involved in an innovative community collaboration? We’d love to hear about it.

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