Tag Archives: community

Community Connections – Interfaith Education

14 Jun

I spent a few hours last night at a Sharing Ramadan event hosted by our local Islamic Society. It was a wonderful event with a speaker who took the time to talk about the beliefs of the Islam faith as well as how Muslims are being viewed by the media. He even took time to answer questions from the audience – and there probably would have been even more questions, but it was time to break the fast before prayers. We also got to go into the prayer area of the mosque for prayers and then shared dinner together as a large group. It was so nice for a group of people to open up their house of worship for questions and understanding and when it comes down to it many of today’s religions (specifically in this case Islam, Judaism and Christianity) are far more similar than they are different.

I’m now thinking about ways to provide an interfaith program at the library from an educational standpoint to share how people are people and that a person’s beliefs are just one part of their identity. We’re also looking at partnering with the school district on a bullying prevention program and with the police department on the opioid epidemic. I believe that these topics all require community connection and dialogue because no one agency or organization can make a difference, but by working together we can start to make our communities stronger and safer for generations to come.

If your library is currently working on anything like this, I’d love to hear more!

Community Survey Results

16 Mar

We created a community survey using Survey Monkey and also had it available on paper for people who stopped in the library and were willing to fill it out. After about six weeks, we gathered 333 responses, about 1/3 of which were gathered online, while the majority were gathered on paper. We also made the survey available at the Community Center and Senior Center in the hopes of getting more people to fill it out.

The results are in and it’s so interesting what people know and don’t know about our library. Many people are unfamiliar with our online resources, many people don’t know our hours or that our book drop is available 24/7 (even when the library is open) and there are always requests for more – more materials, more programs, more space.

Overall, I’d say that most of the people who filled out our survey are happy with the services we provide, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that we have things to work on as well.  The first being customer service, one interaction is all people need to form an opinion about an organization and sometimes that opinion isn’t always positive.  I’m hoping that through our customer service training that we just covered last month, this will begin to improve. I also hope that by working at the desks along side my staff, I can see for myself what’s happening as well as set an example of what we should be doing.

The question becomes, why don’t people know about (insert resources, programs, materials here)? What can we do to better promote ourselves in the community. We are continuing to work towards a number of goals this year and I’m beginning to line up some ideas for next year as well – projects that take time and funding. I’d like to begin promoting ourselves better, something I’ve known for a long time and something that we are continuing to work towards as we create our strategic plan and new website design.

Finally, I keep reminding myself that we can’t change everything we do and we can’t make everyone happy, but we can continue to listen to our community and provide resources and programs that our community wants and needs.

10 Read Aloud Titles About Service for MLK Day

13 Jan


Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a day that many people spend time offering service to their community – small acts to make a difference. Volunteerism can start with the littlest ones in your family and sharing some of these stories is a great way to teach kids kindness and service. These books range from one small act of kindness that ripples through a community to even larger acts such as purchasing an animal for a family overseas which can make a big difference to their way of life. But no matter what you have to offer, teaching children kindness and to think of others is something that I think everyone can do. Holding the door for someone, smiling a hello as you pass them by and asking another child to play together are all simple ways to teach kids to think of others around them. Share some of these great stories for Martin Luther King Jr. Day and share some other titles with me!

  1. The Invisible Boy by Trudy Ludwig
  2. Maddi’s Fridge by Lois Brandt
  3. One Love by Cedella Marley and Bob Marley
  4. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña
  5. The Mitten Tree by Candace Christiansen
  6. Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts
  7. Beatrice’s Goat by Page McBrier
  8. Four Feet, Two Sandals by Karen Lynn Williams
  9. One Hen: How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference by Katie Smith Milway
  10. Boxes for Katje by Candace Fleming

Take Action Tuesday (one week late!)

29 Mar

everydayWeek of Tuesday, March 22

Submit the Share Your Advocacy Story webform.

Every day you’re out there advocating in big ways and small for the importance of library service to children.

Now it’s time to share your triumphs with other Everyday Advocates and inspire them to do the same!

This week, submit the Share Your Advocacy Story webform and give us a specific example of where and how you’ve found success—and with whom.

Brevity is A-OK. Even a few brief sentences or paragraphs can let us know how awesome you’ve been.

We’d love to publish your story in an upcoming issue of the Everyday Advocacy Matters e-newsletter, so we’ll be sure to follow-up with you.

Sharing your advocacy story with colleagues and stakeholders is Everyday Advocacy in action!


My advocacy story is short, sweet and to the point.  I walk my dog all over the neighborhood, so it stands to reason that people begin to recognize me.  One day, we walked past a mom and her baby and the baby was so excited to see a “woof woof.”  So we stopped to talk for a few minutes and I mentioned the library and that we have a storytime for infants.  Fast forward a few weeks and I see the mom and daughter come in regularly for storytime, they’ve met other families, and learned about childcares and preK options in the community.  All that from a quick mention of the library while walking the dog!


Unexpected Valentine’s Day Stories

14 Feb


Although not your typical Valentine’s Day stories, check out my post here for some of those, these are all stories that speak to the power of love among families, friends and communities.  And if you haven’t read or shared these stories with your loved ones, then head out to your favorite library or bookstore and share a few today!

  1. Lenny & Lucy by Philip C. Stead
  2. Be a Friend by Salina Yoon
  3. Extra Yarn by Mac Barnett
  4. Mother Bruce by Ryan T. Higgins
  5. Maple by Lori Nichols
  6. The Girl and the Bicycle by Mark Pett
  7. Leo: A Ghost Story by Mac Barnett
  8. Chengdu Could Not, Would Not Fall Asleep by Barney Saltzberg
  9. Wolfie the Bunny by Ame Dyckman
  10. Nana in the City by Lauren Castillo
  11. Last Stop on Market Street by Matt de la Peña
  12. The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend by Dan Santat
  13. Gaston by Kelly DiPucchio
  14. To the Sea by Cale Atkinson
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