Category Archives: Grants

Call for Speakers: Big Talk From Small Libraries 2019

The Call for Speakers for Big Talk From Small Libraries 2019 is now open!

This free one-day online conference is aimed at librarians from small libraries; the smaller the better! We are looking for speakers from small libraries or speakers who directly work with small libraries. Small libraries of all types – public, academic, school, museum, special, etc. – are encouraged to submit a proposal. We’re looking for seven 50-minute presentations and five 10-minute “lightning round” presentations.

Do you offer a service or program at your small library that other librarians might like to hear about? Have you implemented a new (or old) technology, hosted an event, partnered with others in your community, or just done something really cool? The Big Talk From Small Libraries online conference gives you the opportunity to share what you’ve done, while learning what your colleagues in other small libraries are doing. Here are some possible topics to get you thinking:

  • Unique Libraries
  • Special Collections
  • New buildings
  • Fundraising
  • Improved Workflows
  • Staff Development
  • Advocacy Efforts
  • Community Partnerships
  • That great thing you’re doing at your library!

Big Talk From Small Libraries 2019 will be held on Friday, February 22, 2019 between 8:45 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. (CT) via the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Speakers will be able to present their programs from their own desktops. The schedule will accommodate speakers’ time-zones.

If you are interested in presenting, please submit your proposal by Friday, January 18, 2019.

Speakers from libraries serving fewer than 10,000 people will be preferred, but presentations from libraries with larger service populations will be considered.

This conference is organized and hosted by the Nebraska Library Commission and is co-sponsored by the Association for Rural & Small Libraries.

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CE/Training Grants Applications Due Friday (12/7)

The Continuing Education/Training Grants are back this year and the applications are still open until Friday (12/7)!

Grant information and Application Forms

The purpose of these grants is to assist Nebraska libraries to improve the library services provided to their communities through continuing education and training for their library personnel and supporters. Successful applications will show how the continuing education and/or training proposed will support the library’s mission.

This year we are offering grants in three different areas: attending an out-of-state professional conference, taking an online CE course, and other larger CE group/staff projects.

Applications are due December 7, 2018

Applications will be evaluated and applicants notified by January 11, 2019

For more details about filling out the applications, the archived session “NCompass Live: 2018 Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants” is also available.

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Holli Duggan.

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150 Attend Sparks Grant Open House in Verdigre

On Tuesday, October 16th, over 150 residents attended the Sparks Grant Open House at the Verdigre Public Library.

“Which one is the homework computer?” asked Carter Nelson, a 6th grader at Verdigre Public School, the day after attending the open house. Those homework computers that Carter was referring to are part of an Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), National Leadership Grant (NLG) awarded to the Nebraska Library Commission in partnership with the Nebraska Office of the Chief Information Officer in April of 2018.

The IMLS Sparks Grant, Nebraska Schools and Libraries–Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships, as the name implies, is intending to kindle partnerships between schools and libraries, and through Internet sharing, to help narrow the Homework Gap for public K-12 students. The Verdigre Public Library has a new Homework Hotspot located in the library, with the internet for the hotspot provided by Verdigre Public Schools. The school offers internet speeds that are 7 times faster than internet speeds offered at the public library. Students and staff members from Verdigre Public Schools can access the school’s internet connection to complete homework by using either one of the two new desktop computers purchased by the grant or their own school issued devices. The library offers a location for students who may not have internet at home, have poor connectivity or very slow internet at home to complete their schoolwork.

Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts attended the Open House. The Governor summarized the Sparks Grant and answered questions from the open house attendees for an hour.  The 100 plus students attending the event asked some tough and light-hearted questions ,”How does a state know how much money it will spend next year before knowing its income?”, “What are food stamps?”,  and “Did I hear you’re a Cardinals fan?”

Verdigre is one of five Nebraska communities that are participating in the grant project. The other communities include Bancroft, Genoa, Imperial, and Wymore. The Sparks Grant is for one year, at the end of that year, each community will evaluate the project and decide if they want to continue the project with local funding.

This shared internet is made possible in part by IMLS grant: LG-99-18-0018 and the following partners.

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$10,000 American Dream Adult Literacy Grants Available

The American Library Association (ALA) and Dollar General Literacy Foundation invite public libraries to apply for grants to expand services for adult English language learners or adults in need of basic education and workforce development.

Up to 16 grants of $10,000 each will be awarded. Public libraries are eligible if they serve adult English language learners and are located within 20 miles of a Dollar General Store, distribution center or corporate office. Visit the Dollar General Store Locator to check eligibility.  

Read the project guidelines and apply online by Dec. 14, 2018.

ALA will host a free webinar at 1 p.m. CDT on Wednesday, Oct. 24, for people interested in learning more about the American Dream grants. Register for the webinar here. (Note that the webinar will be recorded and available for free viewing on ALA’s Programming Librarian website.)

The American Dream Literacy Initiative strives to develop tools and resources for libraries and library staff to provide effective literacy services to adult English language learners in their communities and across the country.

Since 2008, 188 libraries in Dollar General communities have initiated or expanded literacy services for adult English language learners. The grants allow libraries to augment their print and digital English as a second language (ESL) collections; increase computer access and training; provide job training; hold English language learning (ELL), general educational development (GED) and citizenship classes; and raise the visibility of services for immigrant populations.

American Dream libraries build replicable programs, develop coalition-building strategies, and provide annotated lists of vetted resources for libraries across the country. ALA shares the libraries’ successes and strategies through the website, on webinars, and at state, regional and national conferences.

The American Dream Literacy Initiative is made possible through the generous support of the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. It is administered by ALA’s Public Programs Office and Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services.

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2018 NLC Grants are Open for Applications

Are you  thinking about applying for one of the three NLC grants? Youth Grants for Excellence, Continuing Education/Training, and Internship Grants all are available right now! Don’t let your library miss out on these opportunities! Recent NCompass Live sessions have featured these grants and are available below.

Youth Grants for Excellence makes funding available specifically for innovative projects for children and young adults in accredited public libraries and state-run institutional libraries in Nebraska. The program is designed to encourage creative thinking, risk-taking, and new approaches to address problems and needs of children and young adults in your community. This grant application is due October 15, 2018. Applications must be received by the Nebraska Library Commission submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. CT. You will be notified by November 16, 2018 if you are awarded a grant.

 

Continuing Education/Training grants help assist Nebraska libraries to improve the library services provided to their communities through continuing education and training for their library personnel and supporters. Successful applications will show how the continuing education and/or training proposed will support the library’s mission. Applications must be submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. CST on December 7, 2018. We will inform applicants whether they have received a grant on or before January 11, 2019.

Internship grants work to introduce high school and college students to the varied and exciting work of Nebraska libraries. The internships are intended to function as a recruitment tool, helping the student to view the library as a viable career opportunity while providing the public library with the finances to provide stipends to the student interns. This grant application is due November 16, 2018. Applications must be received by the Nebraska Library Commission submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m. CT. The Award Announcement will be December 21, 2018.

For more information on these grants contact our Library Development Director, Christa Porter by email or at 402-471-3107.

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Internship Grants Now Available

Nebraska Library Commission Internship Grants are now available!

Accredited Nebraska public libraries are invited to apply for up to $1,000 to fund a high school or college intern in 2019. Applicants may partner with other types of libraries to provide a variety of work settings – partnerships with other public, school, academic, or special libraries are encouraged. The deadline to submit an application is November 16, 2018.

This internship program works to introduce high school and college students to the varied and exciting work of Nebraska libraries. The internships are intended to function as a recruitment tool, helping the student to view the library as a viable career opportunity while providing the public library with the finances (up to $1,000 per library or branch) to provide stipends to the student interns. In the past student interns have helped the libraries expand programs, complete projects, improve websites, and expand social media use, while bringing fresh ideas into the library.

Visit the Internship Grant website for details and the Application Form.

If you have any questions please contact Christa Porter, 800-307-2665, 402-471-3107.

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Applications for CE/Training Grants are Open!

The Continuing Education/Training Grants are back this year and the applications are now open!

The purpose of these grants is to assist Nebraska libraries to improve the library services provided to their communities through continuing education and training for their library personnel and supporters. Successful applications will show how the continuing education and/or training proposed will support the library’s mission.

This year we are offering grants in three different areas: attending an out-of-state professional conference, taking an online CE course, and other larger CE group/staff projects.

Applications are due December 7, 2018

Applications will be evaluated and applicants notified by January 11, 2019

For more details about filling out the applications, the archived session “NCompass Live: 2018 Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants” is now available.

Grant information and Application Forms

If you have any questions or would like more information, please contact Holli Duggan.

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NCompass Live: 2018 Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘2018 Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants’, on Wednesday, September 26, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

The Nebraska Library Commission will be offering Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants this Fall. Full details coming soon! Join us for an overview of the two grants, including eligibility requirements, the application process and grant review, timelines and deadlines.

Presenters: Christa Porter, Library Development Director, and Holli Duggan, Continuing Education Coordinator, Nebraska Library Commission.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Oct. 3 – NO NCOMPASS LIVE – ENJOY NLA/NSLA!
  • Oct. 10 – Virtual Tours in the Library with Nebraska History
  • Oct. 24 – Strategies for Identifying Fake News
  • Oct. 31 – Teaching Digital Literacy in Your Library

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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NCompass Live: Get a Youth Grant for Excellence!

Join us for the next NCompass Live, ‘Get a Youth Grant for Excellence!’, on Wednesday, September 19, 10:00am – 11:00am CT.

Sally Snyder, Coordinator of Children and Young Adult Library Services at the Nebraska Library Commission, will tell you what you need to consider in making an application to the Youth Grants for Excellence program. Since the deadline for these grants is coming up on October 15, this workshop will be timely and should leave you better equipped to complete a successful application.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Sept. 26 – 2018 Continuing Education/Training and Internship Grants
  • Oct. 3 – NO NCOMPASS LIVE – ENJOY NLA/NSLA!
  • Oct. 24 – Strategies for Identifying Fake News
  • Oct. 31 – Teaching Digital Literacy in Your Library

For more information, to register for NCompass Live, or to listen to recordings of past events, go to the NCompass Live webpage.

NCompass Live is broadcast live every Wednesday from 10am – 11am Central Time. Convert to your time zone on the Official U.S. Time website. The show is presented online using the GoToWebinar online meeting service. Before you attend a session, please see the NLC Online Sessions webpage for detailed information about GoToWebinar, including system requirements, firewall permissions, and equipment requirements for computer speakers and microphones.

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Youth Grants for Excellence Applications due 10/15/18

The Nebraska Library Commission announces that grants are available to accredited public libraries and state-run institutional libraries for special projects in the area of children’s and young adult services. These grants are awarded to encourage innovation and expansion of public library services for youth and their parents or caregivers. Applications will be accepted for projects in an area that will benefit children and/or teens and which you see as a need in your community; for examples see the “Introduction” link below.

Log in to the NCompass Live program on September 19 where Sally Snyder will tell you how to  “Get a Youth Grant for Excellence.”

There are two different application forms. For projects requesting $250 – $1,000 in grant funds use the abbreviated, or short form. Applications requesting more than $1,000 must use the long form. Please be sure to use the correct form for your project. Please go to the “Introduction” page for links to the forms (at the bottom of the page).

The minimum amount that will be awarded per grant is $250 and the grants require a 25% match of the requested amount. This means the minimum total project cost will be $313, with your library providing at least $63 ($25 cash and $38 in-kind, remember to round up to full dollars) for the 25% match required.  Use the Project Budget Form at the end of the application form to estimate the amount you will need and to itemize specific expenses. You are advised to be as precise and detailed as possible.

You are welcome to call or email Sally Snyder with questions or to ask for more information.

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Homework Hotspot Installation Complete in Genoa

 

Genoa NE, an IMLS Sparks Grant community, completed installation of the Homework Hotspot at the Genoa Public Library on Wednesday, August 8, 2018. The IMLS Sparks Grant, Nebraska Schools and Libraries – Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships, is designed to kindle partnerships between schools and libraries and to help narrow the Homework Gap for public K-12 students through Internet bandwidth sharing. Hamilton Information Technology of Aurora, NE installed antennas on the Genoa Public Library and Genoa’s Twin River Fitness Center to add a network connection between the library and the Twin River School District. This new library Homework Hotspot is available for Twin River School District students and staff to use outside of school district buildings. (Hamilton Information Technology Wireless Coordinator Aaron McKillip completes installation on roof in photo above).

The library offers a location for school district students to access the school district network to complete homework assignments or work on school projects. Two desktop computers connected to the school network are also available for use at the library’s Homework Hotspot. The school network’s Internet speed averages 70 Mbps at the library. For students that do not have Internet at home or have a slower Internet speed at home, the Homework Hotspot offers an alternate location for completing homework assignments. Genoa Public Library Director Tammi Thiem commented, “The digital divide is a real problem for rural communities. The IMLS Sparks grant provides Twin River students and staff with high-speed Internet at the library to help bridge that gap.”

The Nebraska Library Commission, in partnership with the Nebraska Office of the Chief Information Officer, was awarded a $25,000 Sparks National Leadership Grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Six Nebraska communities were selected to participate in the grant project: Bancroft, Bayard, Genoa, Imperial, Verdigre, and Wymore. Using fixed wireless technology, the public libraries will offer the school districts’ students and staff the ability to access the school district network within the public library. The project began June 1, 2018 and will conclude on May 31, 2019. For more information contact Holly Woldt, Nebraska Library Commission Library Technology Support Specialist, holly.woldt@nebraska.gov, 402-471-4871, 800-307-2665.

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services [IMLS grant: LG-99-18-0018-18]. #IMLSGrant

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Apply Now: Code Club for Small & Rural Libraries

Small and rural public libraries nation-wide are invited to apply to be a part of the IMLS grant “Code Club for Small & Rural Libraries.”

The North Dakota State Library (NDSL) received a grant for $249,000 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), through the National Leadership Grant for Libraries, to help youth learn coding at 50 libraries across the country.

Small and rural communities are at risk of being left behind as computer programming emerges as a critical skill and the gap in access to computer science education widens between urban and rural America. Code Club for Small & Rural Libraries seeks to enable the libraries in these communities to introduce coding to thousands of youth aged 8-14, which will help them gain the skills needed for college and career readiness and life success.

“As centers of learning and catalysts of community change, libraries and museums connect people with programs, services, collections, information, and new ideas in the arts, sciences, and humanities. They serve as vital spaces where people can connect with each other,” said IMLS Director Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew. “IMLS is proud to support their work through our grant making as they inform and inspire all in their communities.”

The grant will deliver all the resources necessary to run a code club in small and rural public libraries. Those resources include one-on-one training sessions, code club software, and ongoing coaching and support.

A code club is an informal program that takes place at a library where kids learn computer programming skills. Teaching kids computer programming skills can dramatically impact your community by providing kids with 21st century career opportunities and instilling a valuable set of life skills, like computational thinking and problem solving.

Through a partnership with Prenda, code club does not require any coding knowledge to run. It does, however, require:

  • Computers (laptops or desktops)
  • High-speed internet
  • A space in the library
  • Library staff/volunteer to facilitate

To be eligible for this grant you must qualify as a “small or rural public library.”

  • Small = any public library with a service area of 15,000 or less
  • Rural = any public library more than 25 miles from an ‘urbanized area’ (as defined by the US Census)

Applications to participate are due July 16 and must be completed online.

Learn more on the grant website or through the official Facebook group.

This project is funded by the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and is administered by the North Dakota State Library, in collaboration with Prenda. (IMLS Grant information)

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Librarians and Teachers to Host Letter Writing Clinics

What could motivate Nebraska young people to write letters? A great story and the opportunity to tell an author about how a book made a difference in their own life can provide just the right encouragement. Teachers and librarians in Nebraska were recently awarded grants to host pilot Letter Writing Clinics for students in their area. The clinics will introduce students to the Letters About Literature contest and letter writing techniques. Students will get ideas for selecting books and learn how to craft letters that can be submitted to the Letters About Literature contest, a national reading and writing promotion program that engages nearly 50,000 adolescent and young readers nationwide in grades four through twelve. The competition encourages young people to read, be inspired, and write back to the author (living or dead) who had an impact on their lives.

The Letter Writing Clinic grants are sponsored by Humanities Nebraska, Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Cultural Endowment, and Nebraska Library Commission. The winning applicants are:

  • Sarah Alfred, Morrill Public Library Director, Friends of Morrill Public Library
  • Keri Anderson, Hoesch Memorial Library Director, Alma
  • Becky Henkel, Bayard Public Library Director
  • Alicia Lassen, Overton Public School Librarian and Teacher

The annual Letters About Literature writing competition is sponsored nationally by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, with funding from Dollar General Literacy Foundation. The Center for the Book was established in 1977 as a public-private partnership to use the resources of the Library of Congress to stimulate public interest in books and reading. The Nebraska competition is coordinated and sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Nebraska Library Commission, Houchen Bindery Ltd., and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

For more information about the Letters About Literature competition, see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/programs/LAL.html. To learn more about Letter Writing Clinics, see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/programs/LAL_Grant/2018/index.aspx.

The Nebraska Center for the Book is housed at the Nebraska Library Commission and brings together the state’s readers, writers, booksellers, librarians, publishers, printers, educators, and scholars to build the community of the book—supporting programs to celebrate and stimulate public interest in books, reading, and the written word. The Nebraska Center for the Book is supported by the Nebraska Library Commission. As the state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services—bringing together people and information.

Humanities Nebraska inspires and enriches personal and public life by offering opportunities to thoughtfully engage with history and culture. Humanities Nebraska was established as a state-based affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities in 1973.

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The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission Website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

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Great Stories Club Grant Applications Due July 9

The American Library Association asks Nebraska librarians, “Do you love books and want to instill a love of reading in others? Learn how ALA’s Great Stories Club grants can help you connect with underserved youth in your community.”

This grant opportunity is open to all library types who are interested in working with (or located within) organizations that serve under-resourced youth, such as alternative high schools, juvenile justice organizations, or foster care agencies.

ALA is now accepting applications for the Great Stories Club, a grant program in which library workers lead reading and discussion programs with underserved teens in their communities. Read the project guidelines and apply online. Applications are due July 9. Up to 150 grants will be awarded.

Program details and eligibility: Working with small groups of approximately 10 teens, grantees will host reading and discussion programs for up to four thematically related books. The titles — selected in consultation with librarian advisors and humanities scholars — are chosen to resonate with reluctant readers struggling with complex issues like academic probation, detention, incarceration, violence, and poverty. All types of libraries are eligible, as long as they work in partnership with, or are located within, organizations that serve under-resourced youth, such as alternative high schools, juvenile justice organizations, homeless shelters, foster care agencies, teen parenting programs, residential treatment facilities, and other nonprofit and community agencies. (Read an account of a former Great Stories Club grantee about her partnership with a juvenile detention center.) Libraries located in high-poverty communities are also eligible to apply, though outreach partnerships with youth-focused organizations are still encouraged.

Themes and titles: Participating libraries may choose to work with one or both of the following themes during a 12-month programming period (September 2018 – August 2019): “Empathy: The Cost of Switching Sides” and “What Makes a Hero? Self, Society and Rising to the Occasion.”

Grantees will receive: 11 paperback copies of up to four book selections (10 to gift to participants and 1 for discussion leader/library collection), travel and accommodation expenses paid for one staff member to attend a 1 ½-day project orientation workshop in Chicago (libraries selected to implement both Great Stories Club series will be assigned to attend only one workshop), and programming materials, including discussion guides, related reading lists and promotional resources,

For more information: See http://www.programminglibrarian.org/articles/apply-now-great-stories-club-book-club-underserved-youth. Potential applicants may sign up for a free webinar to learn more about this opportunity. The webinar will be held at 1 p.m. Central Time on Monday, May 21. Reserve a spot for the webinar. 

Sarah Ostman, American Library Association
Public Programs Office Communications Manager
312-280-5061

 

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Partnership Launched to Help Close the Homework Gap for Rural Students

NLClogo

High-speed Internet access is essential to Nebraska schoolchildren and a partnership between schools and libraries in five Nebraska communities will demonstrate an innovative way to ensure that children can complete homework assignments and projects. The Nebraska Library Commission has been awarded a National Leadership Sparks Grant of $25,000 by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) for a partnership project with the Nebraska Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) and five local school districts and public libraries. The Nebraska Schools and Libraries—Breaking the Ice and Igniting Internet Relationships grant is one of 26 projects out of 117 applications to receive funding totaling $5,770,682 to support libraries across the nation.

Five Nebraska rural school districts and public libraries will work together as partners to increase Internet speeds at the public library using fixed wireless technology to provide additional Internet to the library, augmenting the current Internet service. Up to one gigabit (1,000Mbps) of Internet speed will be provided for a designated homework hotspot for school district students and staff. This will help close the “homework gap” that rural students face when attempting to complete homework assignments and school projects without a reliable Internet source at home. The libraries will use the school districts’ network to augment existing Internet service, supplementing it with high-speed Internet access for K-12 students and staff in these school districts so that students can complete homework assignments, collaborate in groups on research projects, access online instruction, work on special projects, and undertake other digital learning activities. Nebraska communities participating in this one-year project beginning June 1 include Bancroft, Genoa, Imperial, Verdigre, and Wymore.

“I am pleased to announce the recipients of IMLS’s highly competitive library grant programs,” said IMLS Director Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew. “These grants leveraged over $2.7 million in matching funds from local partners and community collaborators, helping to ensure the sustainability of these projects and to enhance their reach and impact.”

“As Nebraska students and teachers embrace digital learning, Nebraska public libraries look for new partnership models with schools to ensure equal access to digital learning resources for all students. Students need broadband services outside of school and after school hours. Libraries fill the gap and contribute to educational achievement. This project demonstrates the commitment of Nebraska’s public libraries to provide high-speed Internet service through innovative educational partnerships with schools. We thank the schools and libraries that have committed to demonstrating this innovative approach to school and public library collaboration,” said Nebraska Library Commission Director Rod Wagner.

“The State of Nebraska’s Office of the CIO is pleased to partner with the Nebraska Library Commission on this project to improve Internet access in small, rural public libraries and to leverage the investments made in the state education network, Network Nebraska,” said Ed Toner, the State Chief Information Officer.

This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services [IMLS grant: LG-99-18-0018-18].

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s approximately 120,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and  civic engagement. Our grant making, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit www.imls.gov and follow us on Facebook  and Twitter.

As Nebraska’s state library agency, the Nebraska Library Commission is an advocate for the library and information needs of all Nebraskans. The mission of the Library Commission is statewide promotion, development, and coordination of library and information services—“bringing together people and information.” The most up-to-date news releases from the Nebraska Library Commission are always available on the Library Commission website, http://nlc.nebraska.gov/publications/newsreleases.

The Nebraska Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) is the State’s agency for Information Technology services. Through partnerships with public organizations, the OCIO provides coordinated IT management, enterprise oversight, and reliable solutions to support the business needs of the state agencies, boards, commissions, and political subdivisions serving Nebraska. Its staff helps manage Network Nebraska, the statewide telecommunications network serving public and private K-12 schools and higher education entities. Network Nebraska is uniquely positioned to assist public libraries with faster and lower cost commodity Internet and peered routing achieved through statewide aggregation and consortium E-rate expertise.

 

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#SparksNebraska #digitalinclusion #DIW2018 #digitalequityis

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Kreutz Bennett Grants Awarded to Small-Town Public Libraries

Six Nebraska public libraries recently received project funding, thanks to the generosity of a lifelong educator, the late Shirley Kreutz Bennett of Lincoln. Each year, the Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund, an affiliated fund of Nebraska Community Foundation (NCF), accepts proposals for matching grants for public libraries in communities with populations under 3,000.

Following Ms. Kreutz Bennett’s wishes, a Fund Advisory Committee composed of her nieces and nephews recommends grants in three areas: planning grants leading to accreditation; enhancement grants to improve library services; and facilities grants for new construction or the renovation, restoration or rehabilitation of current libraries.

All grants require a one-to-one match in local funding and evidence that the project has broad community support. Approximately $80,000 in grant funding is available each year. Grant seekers are encouraged to review the guidelines and application procedures at NebraskaHometown.org/give/kreutz-bennett-donor-advised-fund.

“I would definitely recommend that library directors in eligible Nebraska communities take the time to apply for grants through the Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund,” said Dawnn Tucker, director of Lied Pierce Public Library. “The grant funding that we received in Pierce has made a tremendous impact on the children’s programming in our library. We were able to purchase new books, movies, crafts, games and musical instruments to add to our children’s activities. These items have added new excitement, which in turn has increased the number of children involved. We are very thankful for this grant opportunity!” For more information, contact Reggi Carlson, NCF communications specialist, 402-323-7338 or rcarlson@nebcommfound.org.

The following libraries received grants in 2018:

Dundy County Library. A grant of $12,000 will help complete renovation of a building, which will serve as a new library facility and nearly double the space of the former building.

Dvoracek Memorial Library in Wilber. This library is located on a highway where parking is not permitted. The library received a grant of $6,250 to match funds for construction of additional parking spaces close to the main entrance for increased accessibility for library patrons.

Genoa Public Library. This library applied for and received two separate grants. The first grant in the amount of $1,000 will be used to purchase materials and supplies needed to incorporate a STREAM focus (science, technology, reading, arts, math) into children’s library programs. A second grant for $5,000 will help with repairs to the library’s exterior brick mortar, and to complete additional façade renovation on the historic building that houses the library.

Howells Public Library. The entrance to this library was damaged by flooding several years ago. A grant of $6,000 will match funds to replace the front doors with automated doors, which will increase accessibility for library patrons.

Ravenna Public Library. A grant of $20,000 will help support the fundraising campaign for construction of a new library in Ravenna.

Scribner Public Library. This library is using its $1,500 grant to incorporate a makerspace in the library and provide science-based kits, mechanical sets and sewing machines for its after-school and summer programs.

The Kreutz Bennett Donor-Advised Fund has provided 45 grants to Nebraska libraries since it began annual grantmaking in 2012. Christa Porter, Nebraska Library Commission Director of Library Development, said this grant program is perfect for libraries that are not yet accredited. “Libraries can use grant funding to gather information for their Community Needs Response Plan. This might include paying for a professional to facilitate focus groups or to conduct personal interviews or surveys,” Porter said. Other possibilities for non-accredited libraries may include one-time, or first time, costs that will help libraries earn points on the Accreditation Application. For example, help with purchasing an Integrated Library System, subscribing to online library databases, joining regional or statewide consortia, and expenditures for start-up technology purchases and services.

“Gaining accreditation is critical to our libraries. It opens the door to other outside funding,” said Jeff Yost, NCF president and CEO.  “In many small towns, the library may be the only place where some people have access to the internet.  Shirley’s legacy gift shows that she had great vision and commitment to people in our small communities. We are honored to help the family of Shirley Kreutz Bennett develop a strategy to share her passion for learning,” said Yost.

Nebraska Community Foundation is a statewide organization using charitable giving to mobilize communities across the state. NCF unleashes abundant local assets, inspires charitable giving and connects ambitious people to build stronger communities and a Greater Nebraska. NCF works with volunteer leaders serving more 250 than communities by providing training, strategic development, gift planning assistance and financial management for its affiliated funds located throughout the state. In the last five years, more than 39,000 contributions have been made to NCF affiliated funds, and more than $128 million has been reinvested to benefit Nebraska communities. For more information visit NebraskaHometown.org.

 

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APPLY NOW: ‘The Great American Read’ Grants for Public Libraries

Nebraska public libraries are invited to apply for grants to host public programs around the PBS series “The Great American Read,” an eight-part television and online series designed to spark a national conversation about reading and the books that have inspired, moved, and shaped us, the ALA Public Programs Office announced. “The Great American Read” will engage audiences with a list of 100 diverse books, encouraging audiences to read the books, vote from the list of 100, and share their personal connections to the titles.

 Fifty U.S. public libraries will be selected through a competitive application process to receive a cash grant to support programs and events related to “The Great American Read.” Selected libraries will also receive a programming kit, developed by ALA and PBS, that will help public libraries participate in a national conversation about reading and books, including those featured in the series that highlight themes of love, heroes, villains, other worlds and self-discovery.

Selected libraries will be required to hold at least three public programs related to “The Great American Read” series May and November 2018. Collaboration with local PBS member stations is strongly encouraged.

Read the full project guidelines and apply online by April 17.

“The Great American Read” will premiere May 22 on PBS stations with a two-hour launch, kicking off a summer of reading and voting. In fall 2018, seven new episodes will air, featuring appearances by celebrities, athletes, experts, authors and everyday Americans advocating for their favorite book, culminating with a finale that reveals America’s best-loved novel as chosen by the American public. Selected libraries will receive a DVD collection of the eight-part series with public performance rights; a hardcover copy of the companion book, “The Great American Read: The Book of Books” by PBS (Black Dog & Leventhal, August 21, 2018); print materials for local program promotion and publicity; a programming guide developed by ALA, PBS and a panel of librarian advisors; and more. The libraries will also have the opportunity to host private screenings of the series premiere and six fall episodes before they broadcast to the public.

“The Great American Read” is a production of Nutopia for PBS. PBS Funding for “The Great American Read” is provided by The Anne Ray Foundation and PBS. For more information contact Sarah Ostman, Communications Manager, Public Programs Office, American Library Association, 312-280-5061, sostman@ala.org.

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Apply Now for Funding to Host Letter Writing Clinics

 

Funding is available to support Letters About Literature Letter Writing Clinics in Nebraska libraries and schools. Teachers and Librarians can apply now at: http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/programs/LAL_Grant/2018/howtoapply.aspx

Books make a difference in the lives of Nebraska young people. We know this because they say so in the letters they write to authors for the Letters About Literature competition. In her 2014 winning letter to Gary Soto, Sydney Kohl says, “The work inspired me to be true to myself, and also taught me the importance of each and every small perk in life. Our time on Earth is short, and might not be perfect, but as long as we take advantage of the opportunities given to us, maybe that’s okay.” *

Nebraska teachers and librarians are invited to apply for $300 grants to conduct Letters About Literature Letter Writing Clinics. Funding will be provided to introduce students to the Letters about Literature (LAL) contest and letter writing techniques, and to work with them to select books and craft letters to the authors. Grant funds can be used for items such as instructor honorariums, supplies, marketing, small participation prizes, etc. Applicants will target their efforts to specific age groups: grades 4-6, grades 7-8, or grades 9-12

For more information about the LAL Letter Writing Clinic grant (due April 15), see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/programs/LAL_Grant/2018/index.aspx or contact Mary Jo Ryan, Nebraska Library Commission, 402-471-4870, 800-307-2665. This grant opportunity is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and Nebraska Library Commission and supported by Humanities Nebraska. More about how the LAL national reading and writing promotion program encourages young readers in grades 4-12 to explore what books mean to them by writing a personal letter to an author is available at centerforthebook.nebraska.gov.

* Get inspired by listening to Nebraska winners Ashley Xiques and Sydney Kohl read and talk about their winning letters to the authors that meant something to them at NET Radio’s All About Books.

NOTE: The Letters About Literature competition is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, with additional support from gifts to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, which promotes the contest through its affiliate Centers for the Book, state libraries, and other organizations. Letters About Literature is coordinated and sponsored in Nebraska by the Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from Houchen Bindery, Ltd. and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

 

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Teachers and Librarians Invited to Host Letter Writing Clinics

Books make a difference in the lives of Nebraska young people. We know this because they say so in the letters they write to authors for the Letters About Literature competition. In her 2014 winning letter to Gary Soto, Sydney Kohl says, “The work inspired me to be true to myself, and also taught me the importance of each and every small perk in life. Our time on Earth is short, and might not be perfect, but as long as we take advantage of the opportunities given to us, maybe that’s okay.” *

Nebraska teachers and librarians are invited to apply for $300 grants to conduct Letters About Literature Letter Writing Clinics. Funding will be provided to introduce students to the Letters about Literature (LAL) contest and letter writing techniques, and to work with them to select books and craft letters to the authors. Grant funds can be used for items such as instructor honorariums, supplies, marketing, small participation prizes, etc. Applicants will target their efforts to specific age groups: grades 4-6, grades 7-8, or grades 9-12

For more information about the LAL Letter Writing Clinic grant (due April 15), see http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/lalwritingclinics or contact Mary Jo Ryan, Nebraska Library Commission, 402-471-4870, 800-307-2665. This grant opportunity is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and Nebraska Library Commission and supported by Humanities Nebraska. More about how the LAL national reading and writing promotion program encourages young readers in grades 4-12 to explore what books mean to them by writing a personal letter to an author is available at centerforthebook.nebraska.gov.

* Get inspired by listening to Nebraska winners Ashley Xiques and Sydney Kohl read and talk about and their winning letters to the authors that meant something to them at NET Radio’s All About Books.

NOTE: The Letters About Literature competition is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, with additional support from gifts to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, which promotes the contest through its affiliate Centers for the Book, state libraries, and other organizations. Letters About Literature is coordinated and sponsored in Nebraska by the Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from Houchen Bindery, Ltd. and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

 

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New Year’s Resolution? Try United for Libraries Training Resources!

Nebraska libraries are invited to use the resources and support of United for Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. The Library Commission supports membership to United for Libraries for all of the state’s public libraries
to ensure that Nebraska library staff, friends, trustees, and foundations can take advantage of services to enhance fund raising, advocacy, and public awareness.

Nebraska libraries are encouraged to use a special website (www.ala.org/united/Nebraska) to access resources, webinars, online training, and publications for Nebraska library trustees, library directors, and library staff at no charge to the participating library, including: Trustee Academy Five online courses; Short Takes for Trustees Ten 10-minute training videos; Engaging Today’s Volunteers for Libraries and Friends Webinar series on volunteer recruitment and retention; Friend Your Library Bookmark and Poster Files Free downloadable promotional items; Recorded Webinars Just-in-time webinar training on topics like Troubled Library Boards and Merging Friends and Foundation; Resource Collection Zones Current and archived newsletters, toolkits, electronic publications, special offers, etc. for Library Boards, Friends, and Foundations; and Power Guide for Successful Advocacy A step-by-step guide to developing an advocacy campaign, with examples of talking points, flyers, petitions, etc. at http://www.ala.org/united/powerguide.

Additionally, United for Libraries is accepting applications for the United for Libraries Friend Conference Grant through Jan. 15, 2018. This grant enables one member of a Friends of the Library group at a public library to attend the ALA Annual Conference. First-time Conference attendees, who are active in their public library Friends group, can receive a grant of $850, plus full ALA Annual Conference registration. For more information and to apply, see www.ala.org/united/grants_awards/friends/united.

United for Libraries brings together library voices to speak out on behalf of library services and free public access to information. This national network of enthusiastic library supporters stresses the importance of libraries as the social and intellectual centers of communities and campuses—educating and organizing the strongest voice for libraries: those who use them, raise money for them, and govern them.

For more information see United for Libraries at http://www.ala.org/united/

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