Blogger Building Partnerships committee

Building Partnerships from Worry and Good Will

This is not the blog post I imagined writing when I signed up to do it months ago. And I am pretty confident in assuming that your work lives and professional aspirations are also significantly altered. In addition to trying to stay healthy or recovering from this deadly virus, many of us are furloughed, nervous about our next paycheck or capacity to work, or embarking on work we never imagined would be part of our day.  It also may not seem like the time for developing partnerships. Or reading a blog post about developing partnerships. However, as we rebuild and recreate how we serve our communities, while also trying to remember what day of the week it is, other organizations and entities are also in the process of reimagining how they can start back up. And none of us has enough resources to cover all of the needs.  Now more…

Blogger Building Partnerships committee

Your Library and Junior Achievement

Baltimore County Public Library partnered with our local Junior Achievement thanks in part to a grant from the Maryland State Library. This grant supports Junior Achievement’s Biztown program, which is an interactive space where 5th graders from Central Maryland go for a day to learn the ins and outs of how to be a part of the economy of a town. There, the students take on a role in Biztown as anything from the CEO or CFO of a company, to the Mayor of Biztown, or to the Library Director. Staff at Baltimore County Public Library helped design the Biztown Library and develop the role of the Library Director, as well as provided volunteers to help staff it. In addition to partnering Junior Achievement’s Biztown, the library participated in Junior Achievement’s Inspire Career Fair. Staff from the library demonstrated what it is like to work in a 21st century library with…

Blogger Building Partnerships committee

Partnering to Expand Inclusiveness in Your Collection: Girls of the Crescent

When putting together a library collection many librarians strive to collect a variety of materials full of the latest and greatest books. In a youth collection this also means collecting books to suit all reading levels and building an inclusive collection that is reflective of everyone in the library community. Building an inclusive collection of materials is important in all library collections, but it is especially important in a youth collection because a child who does not see themselves in the world of literature may be discouraged enough not to read. Unfortunately, it is not always easy to find inclusive books and that’s when it’s helpful to build a partnership that will improve your collection. Rochester Hills Public Library was approached by two high school Muslim girls named Mena and Zena Nasiri, who were always avid readers, but grew up longing to see themselves in literature. They decided to make…

Blogger Building Partnerships committee

Meeting Young Adults Where They Are

Ask many librarians what group of patrons is the most difficult to connect with and you might get a variety of answers. Obviously it varies based on location, public transit (or lack thereof), range of services offered etc. In my system a common response is high schoolers. They have packed schedules with little free time to read or visit the library, often their reading is proscribed by coursework, or superseded by after school activities, hanging out with their friends or college applications. Our Teen New Book shelf is jam packed of the latest and greatest titles with very little movement. I am fortunate enough to work in a town, Grandville, Michigan, where the public library is highly valued and a community hub. My colleague Kris Vogelar, created a wonderful partnership many years ago called A+ Partners in Education. This group pairs local schools with our Youth Staff at the beginning…