Blogger Public Awareness Committee

Turning the Page: PLA Advocacy Training Resource

Does your library need help with advocacy training? Has your library used the Turning the Page training developed by PLA? Read on to see if your library would benefit from this comprehensive advocacy training curriculum.

Advocacy is critical to building public support and demonstrating the many ways libraries improve lives and connect communities. Library leaders need to have a seat at the table where important funding and policy decisions are made. Turning the Page: Supporting Libraries, Strengthening Communities is a resource for improving the advocacy knowledge and skills of public library staff and partners.

Turning the Page is broken down into 3 parts, the Implementation Guide, Curriculum and Advocacy Action Plan Workbook. The curriculum has 15 sessions. Five of these sessions provide core information, deemed critical for any advocacy training, according to the Implementation Guide.

  1. Introduction
  2. Value of the Public Library (core)
  3. Defining Advocacy (core)
  4. Developing Your Advocacy Goal (core)
  5. Identifying Target Audiences (core)
  6. Using Library Perception Information and Impact Data
  7. Creating Library Advocacy Messages (core)
  8. Creating a Library Story
  9. Telling Your Library Story
  10. Effective Presentations
  11. Media Planning and Outreach
  12. Social Media and Advocacy
  13. Making a Library Funding or Policy Request
  14. Building and Sustaining Library Partnerships
  15. Putting Advocacy Plans into Practice


Each session includes trainer notes with talking points, a PowerPoint presentation, and a set of handouts and worksheets. The curriculum content is customizable. Sessions are written to be broadly applicable and reflective of your community and library needs. Adding examples, stories, and case studies increases understanding and motivates participants. The curriculum is designed to be flexible, too, and can be adapted for in-person, online or a blended training experience. As written, the 15 training sessions comprise more than 20 hours of training. However, if you lack time or resources to deliver all the sessions, Turning the Page recommends starting with the five core sessions. Completing the included pre-training assessment will help you put together your advocacy training plan.


Turning the Page has led to several effective advocacy campaigns. Share stories of your library’s successful advocacy campaign in the comments.


This post addresses ALSC Core Competencies V. Outreach and Advocacy


Jackie Cassidy, Assistant Manager of the Abingdon Branch of Harford County Public Library, contributed this article as a member of ALSC’s Public Awareness Committee.



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