Building Common Ground: discussions of Community, Civility and Compassion

The American Library Association has $2500 grants to give to 30 public libraries in the U.S. The money is from the Fetzer Institute, one of the sponsors of Krista Tippet’s program, for those of you who listen to NPR. But time is short for applying for this grant. It is due November 18, 2011, and the programming related to the grant has to be fully developed and planned (including speakers engaged, bios submitted, venues scheduled, etc.), so you’ll want to look at this immediately if you are considering applying.
Building Common Ground’s goal is “to engage the public in contemplation and discussion of the importance of community, civility and compassion in their daily lives.” It is intended to bring together adult audiences in the library for events and programs including reading, viewing, reflection, discussion and civic engagement in order to enhance the quality of life and learning in the community. Libraries are required to present from four to eight programs with this grant and must develop these under one or more of three programming templates: Reflection; Engagement; Action. The information presented for these grants is comprehensive and offers multiple programming ideas which will be helpful to any library planning programs (e.g., a panel on civility plus discussion; using books and videos as discussion starters; hosting a service fair). Two webinars have been scheduled to help applicants as they write their proposals. The first of these takes place Thursday, October 17, 2011 at 3 PM Central time and is entitled: Creating Common Ground Community Tours. The second, entitled Programming with the Charter for Compassion including Creating Reading Groups Focused on ‘Twelve Stops to a Compassionate Life’ by Karen Armstrong, is scheduled for Thursday, November 3, 2011 at 12 noon Central time.
Grant notification is scheduled for December 16, 2011. The programs will need to take place between February 1, 2012 and November 30, 2012.
The resources offered for applicants are excellent including even the criteria upon which applications will be judged. But the time to apply is very short (and you need to register to create an application account before you start), so, if you are interested, you’ll need to get cracking.

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