Category Archives: Public Relations

Free ALA webinar: “Last Chance for a Complete Count”

ALA is offering a webinar for library staff: 2020 Census: Last Chance for a Complete Count, on July 8 at 2 pm ET. Registration is free. After the session, the recording will be posted at ala.org/census.    

New guide on adapting census outreach in response to COVID-19:  
ALA released a new publication, “Libraries and the 2020 Census: Adapting Outreach in Response to COVID-19 (PDF).” The free guide explains changes to the 2020 Census process and highlights opportunities for libraries to adapt census outreach activities.    

Check your community’s response rate:  
How does your area compare in its response rate to date? Which neighborhoods are lagging behind? Find current data to inform your outreach and messages on the 2020 Census Response Rate Map or the Census 2020 Hard to Count Map.    

Share your event on the Census Counts calendar:  
Is your library planning a 2020 Census event (including virtual events)? Submit it to the national Census Counts calendar. Check the calendar for other events from partners in your community.
Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, General, Information Resources, Library Management, Public Relations, Technology, What's Up Doc / Govdocs | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening

Join us on NCompass Live next Wednesday, July 1 at 10am CT, for ‘Nebraska Libraries in the Time of COVID: Planning for Reopening’.

Public libraries are major hubs of activity in our communities, so staff must take extra precautions when they start offering more in-person services during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Join us to hear what ‘reopening’ looks like in some Nebraska libraries. Library staff will share their planning processes, strategies, experiences so far, and lessons learned as they ensure that their libraries are safe for both their staff and patrons.

Presenters: Cecelia Lawrence, Director, North Platte Public Library; Steve Fosselman, Director and Celine Swan, Youth Services Librarian, Grand Island Public Library; Denise Harders, Director, Central Plains Library System.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • July 8 – Here’s What Python Does for Us: What Can it Do for Your Library?
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It
  • July 22 – Creating Accessible Materials for Library Instruction
  • July 29 – Pretty Sweet Tech

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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Enter Your Library to Win the 2020 Jerry Kline Community Impact Prize

Deadline: July 15, 2020 (Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. EDT.)

The Jerry Kline Community Impact Prize, developed in partnership between the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation and Library Journal, was created in 2019 to recognize the public library as a vital community asset. When libraries, civic entities, organizations, and the people they serve become close partners, their communities thrive.

Prize: One winning library will receive $250,000 in unfettered grant monies from the Gerald M. Kline Family Foundation. The winning library will also be profiled in the November issue of Library Journal and online.

The winning library will be identified based on the degree of its impact on the community in the following key areas:

  • Engagement – a) How do the local government and other civic institutions partner with the library—and vice versa—to support the service area’s defined civic goals? b) How does the library use deep engagement and co-creation with community individuals and non-governmental organizations to drive library services?
  • Recognition – What does the community recognize are positive outcomes from the library, and how is that recognition given? How is that reflected in support?
  • Inclusion – How does the library go the extra mile to meet the needs of marginalized or underserved populations among its community and to promote social cohesion and connection across differences?
  • Leadership development – How does the library ensure its own organizational strength and dynamism?
  • Environmental sustainability – How does the library lead on sustainable thinking for the library itself and the community at large to ensure future resilience?  
  • Inventiveness – How are the library services original, both strategically and tactically?

Application Requirements

  • Nominations will be submitted via an online form.
  • Nominations should include the following:
    • Nominee data: Library name, primary contact and contact mailing address, phone number, email.
    • Library data: population in service area, physical area served, per capita budget, number of patrons served, number of FTE, number of volunteers, days and hours open per week, types of existing funding sources with their relative percentages within total funding.
    • Multiple-author submissions are permitted. For submissions with multiple authors, please include the names and affiliations of all of the group members.
    • An overview summary of no more than 1,000 words pertaining to the goals and criteria listed above.
    • Detailed answers to focused answers on each of the criteria driven questions above (via fields in the online submission form).
    • Three letters of support from community partners and/or civic leaders, with at least one from a civic official.
    • Optional: Supporting materials such as photographs/images of the library and surrounding community; press coverage, brief videos (not exceed three minutes), etc.

Read about the 2019 winner, Sacramento Public Library.

Eligibility: All U.S. Public Libraries are eligible for the prize, whether in a single building in a small town or a multi-branch system serving an entire region. Previous winners are asked to take a ten year hiatus from submitting again for consideration.

Application Deadline: The deadline for consideration for the 2020 Community Impact Prize is July 15, 2020. (Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. EDT.)

Please submit nominations via the form found here.

Questions? Please contact Meredith Schwartz, Editor-in-Chief, Library Journal at mschwartz@mediasourceinc.com

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NCompass Live: Who are These People & Why are They in My Library? Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons

Find out ‘Who are These People & Why are They in My Library?’ and learn about ‘Using Empathy & UX to Understand Your Library Patrons’ on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, on Wednesday, June 17 at 10:00am CT.

How often does your library make decisions about services offered without checking with library users first? Are library administrators or external agents making decisions on behalf of library patrons without understanding their needs? Are you puzzling over why some of your programs are poorly attended, or services under utilized? Do you sometimes feel like you are floundering in the dark, trying to make sense of patron behavior? Have you done usability testing, but need to go beyond that to learn even easier methods for assessing and improving library services? In this session we will discuss ways to know your users better through some powerful UX techniques like: creating user personas, diagramming user journey maps, conducting focus groups and surveys, field studies, and card sorting. This session, conducted by a librarian at a university and a UX professional from the private sector, will include demonstrations showcasing both qualitative and quantitative UX methods. Attendees will leave with ready models to put to work in their library.

Presenters: Jennifer DeJonghe, Reference and Instruction Librarian, Metropolitan State University; Rich Harrison, User Experience Consultant, Horizontal.

Upcoming NCompass Live shows:

  • June 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech – How to Leverage Online Learning to Build New Skills
  • July 15 – The Taming of the Site: Helping Users Find What They Need Where They Expect It

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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Results From COVID/Cares Act Survey

As of this week, we have received 163 responses to the COVID/Cares Act survey sent to libraries, representing a 65% response rate. The input of libraries has been valuable to NLC planning for Cares Act funding. Stay tuned for more information about that, but for now, it might be helpful to summarize the survey results.

The survey asked what libraries are doing to prepare for re-opening, and what the concerns are upon re-opening. This bar chart at the top illustrates the results, and note that libraries could choose more than one response. Cleaning, handling of materials, and programming topped the list. However, it is important to note that many libraries are concerned about the proximity of patrons in various areas of the library (e.g. meeting rooms, computer labs, etc.). Some noted a potential shift when re-opening to provide extended computer lab hours in order to accommodate needs, or providing more mobile devices for check out (inside or outside of the library) in order to provide social distance.

As far as staffing goes, we know that some libraries have experienced RIF’s (reduction in force), and layoffs, but this has not been the norm. Over 30% of respondents reported all staff reporting to work, and over 30% reported at least the director reporting to work. It is appropriate to note that many libraries only have one primary staff person (the director). Only 6% reported that no staff were coming to work. Numerous libraries are offering alternative services, as over 75% reported providing curbside circulations and over 40% reported providing virtual programming. 90% of survey respondents reported completing tasks associated with circulation and mail processing. This likely includes cleaning and quarantining items, and almost 75% reported maintenance, security, and cleaning tasks performed by staff.

The survey also asked about what the library’s needs are upon re-opening. Topping the list is an alternative to in-person summer reading events, and making sure items are clean and safe by providing adequate sanitizing and protective equipment. This chart at the right shows those results.

Finally, some of the open-ended answers give insight into longer-term needs of libraries to address community concerns and prepare for the future. Anecdotally, some of these responses include the following:

  • Expanding the range of Wi-Fi to areas outside of the library, allowing for users to be more spread out;
  • Device lending to community members that do not have their own (e.g. laptop, tablet computers);
  • Providing relevant information about COVID-19 to the community;
  • Online/virtual programming;
  • eBook and Audiobook availability and access;
  • Providing materials (clean and sanitized) such as books, puzzles, music, videos, games, and activity packs to quarantined or at risk groups;
  • Improve internet speed and infrastructure to handle increased demands;
  • Printing, copy, and fax services (providing with lower touch);
  • Reference and partnerships with organizations to support unemployment, economic recovery, small business, and other assistance; and
  • Hotspot lending.

Many libraries are now evaluating their technology, network infrastructure, and Wi-Fi (range, speed, etc.). Did you know that NLC offers FREE technology assessments and help to you? If you are interested, please check out our Better Broadband webpage for resources, and to move forward towards an assessment, contact ,Holly Woldt.

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2020 State Aid Information Has Been Posted

The 2020 state aid calculations are now complete. This year, we’ve transitioned from paper state aid letters to electronic distribution of information to public libraries. You should have received an e-mail notification about your aid if you are an accredited public library. Here is some general information about the state aid program and eligibility, and how it is distributed. There is also a posted list of the state aid distributions for 2020 (including this year’s formula, the payment amounts, and aid per capita). Finally, here is a link to a press release you can customize and use for your particular library.

This year, there were 46 libraries that will be receiving Dollar$ for Data payments. Those libraries are now eligible to apply for accreditation.

The next public library survey collection cycle (required to maintain accreditation for accredited libraries and required for unaccredited libraries to receive Dollar$ for Data payments) begins in November.

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CCC Library Information Services Classes

Central Community College announces classes for the Library and Information Services program for Fall 2020.

Registration opens April 14, 2020 for classes beginning August 17, 2020. All classes are online and can be applied to a Central Community College Associate Degree.

See details of classes and registration information at: https://www.cccneb.edu/library/

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Drinking Water Safe During COVID-19 Pandemic

LINCOLN – As Nebraskans are taking preventative measures against COVID-19, the Drinking Water division of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) would like to remind everyone that drinking water remains safe to use.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that COVID-19 has not been detected in drinking water, and that conventional water treatment methods of filtration and disinfection — which are in most municipal drinking water systems — should remove or inactivate the virus causing COVID-19.

“Common disinfection methods used in water and wastewater treatment are expected to be effective for inactivation of coronaviruses when executed properly,” said Sue Dempsey, administrator of the DHHS Drinking Water Division.

Dempsey advises water system operators to continue monitoring drinking water disinfection processes for systems with upstream wastewater impacts both during and after the outbreak for infectious coronaviruses.

Although drinking water from the tap is safe for public consumption, federal guidance also recommends that the public consider maintaining a supply of bottled water. If people are ill and have to isolate in their own homes, it is easiest to use bottled water rather than sanitizing water glasses that might be shared with the rest of the household.

Stay up to date on the latest news regarding the Coronavirus with the World Health Organization, CDC and DHHS.

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Nebraska Library Commission Awards Grants for Youth Library Service

NLC Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 3, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                            
Sally Snyder
402-471-4003
800-307-2665

Nebraska Library Commission Awards Grants for Youth Library Service

The Nebraska Library Commission recently awarded $18,500 in grants for Excellence in Youth service. Of the grants awarded to twenty-two Nebraska libraries, several addressed the need for materials like LEGO®, STEAM, and other activities to encourage creativity in young people. The Nebraska Library Commission congratulates the public libraries listed below as they develop new and innovative programs to ensure excellence in library service for Nebraska young people.

The recipients are:

  • Atkinson Public Library, Preschool learning materials, books, and activities
  • Battle Creek Public Library, LEGO®  kits and STEAM kits
  • Bayard Public Library, ten group activities and programing, and Makerspace equipment
  • Bellevue Public Library, iPads for youth patrons for hands-on learning opportunities including Spanish, Photography, and Music Composition
  • Blue Hill Public Library, Teen Nights at the Library
  • Burwell, Garfield County Library, Teen Space renovations and Teen Advisory Board creation
  • Central City Public Library, Summer Reading Program presenters
  • Columbus Public Library, Coding Clubs and Teen Game Nights
  • David City, Hruska Memorial Public Library, Imagination Play Area supporting STEM learning for young children
  • Franklin Public Library, LEGO® Club, Teen programing, and Summer Reading Program
  • Genoa Public Library, Youth materials, and programming for afterschool and summertime
  • Hastings Public Library, STEAM focused activities, Mega-Brain Kidz Club, and Summer Reading Program presenters
  • Kimball Public Library, Expanding STEAM at the Library, Makerspace technology, and supplemental equipment
  • Madison Public Library, 1000 Books before Kindergarten
  • Mead Public Library, Summer Reading Program
  • Minden, Jensen Memorial Library, expanding diversity at story time using multilingual materials
  • Neligh Public Library, Teens After Hours program
  • Ord Township Library, afterschool activities for youth
  • Plattsmouth Public Library, Golden Sower Awards programs
  • Lied Randolph Public Library, STEM activities, Youth programs, Learning toys & stations
  • Superior Public Library, themed Reading kits (backpacks) for young children
  • Wausa, Lied Lincoln Township Library, STEAM kits for youths

Youth Grants for Excellence are made available by the Nebraska Library Commission with funding from the State of Nebraska. 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.”

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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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Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020 is tomorrow!

Small libraries! Awesome ideas! FREE!

Join us tomorrow for the Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020 online conference. Registration is still open, so head over to the Registration page and sign up!

We have a great agenda for the day, with seven 50 minute sessions plus five 10 minute lightning round sessions. You can log in and out of the conference as you like throughout the day, based on your interest and availability.

Topics range from technology to programming to new roles for the library. This event is a great opportunity to learn about the innovative things your colleagues are doing in their small libraries.

And, Nebraska library staff and board members can earn 1 hour of CE Credit for each hour of the conference you attend! A special Big Talk From Small Libraries CE Report form has been made available for you to submit your C.E. credits.

So, come join us for a day of big ideas from small libraries!

Posted in Books & Reading, Education & Training, Information Resources, Library Management, Programming, Public Relations, Technology, Youth Services | Tagged | Leave a comment

Only One Week Until Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020!

Small libraries! Awesome ideas! FREE Online Conference!

There’s only one week until Big Talk From Small Libraries 2020!

Check out the full schedule and register to join us next Friday, February 28.

Sponsored by the Nebraska Library Commission and the Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL), this free one-day online conference is aimed at librarians from small libraries; the smaller the better! Each of our speakers is from a small library serving fewer than 10,000 people. This event is a great opportunity to learn about the innovative things your colleagues are doing in their small libraries.

Everyone is welcome to register and attend, regardless of how big or small your library. But, if your library serves a few hundred to a few thousand people, this is the day for you!

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$24,500 in Internship Grants Awarded to Nebraska Public Libraries

NLClogo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 3, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:                            
Christa Porter
402-471-3107
800-307-2665

$24,500 in Internship Grants Awarded to Nebraska Public Libraries

Nebraskans will once again reap the benefits of the energy and creativity of Nebraska young people as they serve as interns in their local public libraries. The Nebraska Library Commission recently awarded Nebraska Library Internship Grants totaling $24,500 to twenty-two Nebraska public libraries. These internship grants will support public library interns, who will contribute to the scope and value of the diverse programs and activities in Nebraska’s public libraries.

“The internships are a great opportunity for students to get involved in library work. Beyond earning money and gaining valuable work experience, the student is exposed to the broad range of library services and programming. Internships provide an opportunity for the student to view the library as a viable and satisfying career choice. In addition, interns bring a fresh perspective and their own unique talents to the library,” said Nebraska Library Commission Director Rod Wagner.

Student interns will learn about library work as they shadow staff, assist with day-to-day library operations, and implement special projects. Some of the activities that students will participate in include:

  • plan and implement programs such as summer reading programs for all ages, storytime sessions, book discussions, and teen/tween activities;
  • implement a Young Adult Book Group or a Teen Summer Reading Program;
  • organize Makerspaces and Maker Clubs, as well as other STEAM learning activities;
  • create a Local History Collection;
  • assist with outreach events outside the library;
  • update the library’s website and social media sites (Facebook, Pinterest, blogs, etc.) or in some situation designing and coding a new website;
  • assist with circulation activities, book selection, and collection management;
  • create flyers, newsletters, newspaper articles, and other promotional materials; and
  • work with Summer Youth Outreach Services to provide Bookmobile services at locations throughout the city and county.

The following Nebraska public libraries were awarded 2020 internship grant funding:

Alma, Hoesch Memorial Library
Atkinson Public Library
Axtell Public Library
Bassett, Rock County Public Library
Bayard Public Library
Bellevue Public Library
Columbus Public Library
Falls City Library & Arts Center
Grant, Hastings Memorial Library
Kimball Public Library
Lincoln City Libraries – Three branches (Bennett Martin, Loren Corey Eiseley Branch, Charles H. Gere Branch) and the Lied Bookmobile/Youth Services Department
Orleans, Cordelia B Preston Memorial Library
Oshkosh Public Library
Oxford Public Library
Plainview Public Library
Shelby Community Library
York, Kilgore Memorial Library

Additionally, five public libraries participating in the Library Innovation Studios: Transforming Rural Communities (LIS) project have also received 2020 internship grant funding. The interns hired in these libraries will primarily be working with this LIS makerspace grant. These libraries include:

La Vista Public Library
Lied Pierce Public Library
McCook Public Library
Nelson Public Library
Superior Public Library

Funding for the project is supported and administered by the Nebraska Library Commission, in partnership with the Nebraska Library Systems.

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.”

Nebraska’s Regional Library Systems consist of four non-profit corporations governed by boards representative of libraries and citizens in the region. The four systems were established to provide access to improved library services through the cooperation of all types of libraries and media centers within the counties included in each System area.

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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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Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant

From the American Library Association News & Press Center:

The American Library Association (ALA) invites library workers to apply for a new annual grant to support innovative and meaningful community engagement efforts in libraries.

The Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant will provide $2,000 for a school, public, academic, tribal or special library to expand its community engagement efforts. Libraries are invited to apply by designing and outlining activities for a library-led community engagement project.

Project activities to be covered by the grant may include developing community engagement programs and services; partnering with a community agency that builds the capacity of the community to address an important concern/issue; or creating a program or event that connects the library to a community-identified aspiration or concern.

Community engagement is the process of working collaboratively with community members ¬— be they library users, residents, faculty, students or local organizations — to address issues for the betterment of the community.

Applications will be accepted between Dec. 2, 2019, and Feb. 3, 2020. View the full award guidelines and apply visit  www.ala.org/LTCEG.

In May 2019, ALA announced that it had surpassed its original $50,000 fundraising goal to support the creation of the Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant, raising a total of $70,000 from 130 individuals. The initiative was made possible by a matching grant from former ALA president and longtime generous supporter Nancy Kranich.

“Thanks to our work in ALA, libraries of all types have unleashed the power of engaging their communities, working collaboratively to advance their aspirations and concerns, particularly for those voices rarely heard,” said Kranich, a past president of ALA who teaches a new generation of civically focused librarians in the Masters of Information program at Rutgers University. “I’m grateful that so many people have stepped forward to join me in supporting this vital work. Together, we can ensure that more libraries develop and share innovative approaches that demonstrate what’s possible when we turn outward toward our communities.”

The Libraries Transform Communities Engagement Grant is part of Libraries Transform Communities (LTC), ALA’s community engagement initiative. Since 2014, LTC has reimagined the role libraries play in supporting communities. Libraries of all types, from across the country, have utilized the free dialogue and deliberation training and resources to lead community and campus forums; take part in anti-violence activities; provide a safe space for residents to come together to discuss challenging topics; and have productive conversations with civic leaders, library trustees and staff. Learn more at www.ala.org/LTC.

LTC is administered by ALA’s Public Programs Office.

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NCompass Live: Community Engagement: Straight Talk

Join the conversation with some Straight Talk about Community Engagement on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, January 29 at 10am Central Time.

Innovation encompasses far more than technology. One of the most exciting trends in 21st century libraries is the emphasis on restructuring and reinventing our roles in our communities. A huge part of this discussion revolves around the term “Community Engagement”. And while this sounds grand and fancy, things often get blurry when we are pressed to define it, implement it, and (the most daunting of all) measure it.

It’s time to cut through ambiguity and put concrete parameters around this evasive topic. This discussion will center around the following questions about community engagement: Who, What, When, Where, Why, and HOW?

Participants will leave with a clear definition of Community Engagement, along with the framework for how to build a Community Engagement plan. One size doesn’t fit all. Your library is uniquely special and to honor this fact, this interactive hour will include brainstorming about what’s right for your library and community. This discussion will be supported by concrete examples and case studies from libraries who have implemented successful community engagement plans.

This conversation is for everyone in the public library. The secret to effective community engagement involves the whole team; we all have an important part to play.

Presenter: Erica Rose, Library Science Faculty/Program Coordinator, University of Nebraska at Omaha.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Feb. 5 – Best New Teen Reads of 2019
  • Feb. 12 – Legal Research for Non-Lawyers and Librarians
  • Feb. 19 – 2020 One Book One Nebraska: All the Gallant Men
  • Feb. 26 – Pretty Sweet Tech

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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Nebraska Library Commission Awarded $28,000 for New Books and eBooks by Nonprofit First Book

Contact:
Christa Porter
402-471-3107
christa.porter@nebraska.gov

Melanie Boyer
202-639-0114
mboyer@firstbook.org

Nebraska Library Commission Awarded $28,000 for New Books and eBooks by Nonprofit First Book

LINCOLN, NE (December 23, 2019) – The Nebraska Library Commission’s Books2Kids Learning Initiative has been awarded $28,000 for new books and eBooks by First Book, the nonprofit social enterprise focused on equal access to quality education for children in need. The award is part of First Book’s OMG Books Awards: Offering More Great Books to Spark Innovation, a program that will unlock more than $4.7 million in funding to distribute 1.5 million brand new books and eBooks to children living in low-income communities in 33 states and territories.

The Nebraska Library Commission’s Books2Kids Learning Initiative will use the award to reach out to schools, public libraries, Head Start programs, and Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Centers in Nebraska to encourage them to register in the First Book Marketplace. By purchasing books and eBooks through the Marketplace, recipients will provide children in need improved access to quality educational materials, programming, and experiences. Recipients will choose their own book and eBook titles, matching them to their specific community needs. Institutions interested in participating can visit the Books2Kids webpage to learn more.

“The Nebraska Library Commission is uniquely qualified to organize and coordinate this program as we work daily with schools and public libraries in communities with children in need. Our goal is to facilitate the improvement of educational opportunities for children across Nebraska.” said Rod Wagner, Nebraska Library Commission Director.

Awardees are using the funding to select books and eBooks from the First Book Marketplace (www.fbmarketplace.com), First Book’s award-winning eCommerce platform, that best meet the needs of the children they serve. Nebraska was among 12 states in the final cycle of awards. First Book estimates the total value of the books distributed will be more than $12 million.

“Education consistently ranks among the highest priorities for Americans, yet school funding is still below pre-recession levels in 23 states, and the need for resources is taking on an acute sense of urgency,” said Kyle Zimmer, First Book president, CEO, and cofounder. “Educators are grossly under-resourced, especially in low-income communities, and working at maximum effort with what they have. With the OMG Books Awards, First Book is not only addressing a recognized national priority, we’re also supporting educators so they can provide the best education possible to kids in need.”

Access to adequate resources is one of the greatest contributors to educational success in the United States. Research indicates that just the presence of books in the home improves educational outcomes, yet low-income communities across the U.S. are plagued by vast ‘book deserts’—with one community having only a single book per as many as 830 children. Additionally, members of the First Book Network, who exclusively serve kids in need, have indicated that without First Book, the children they serve would have access to very few books, if any at all. (References below).

Eligible educators, librarians, providers, and others serving children in need can sign up to receive resources from First Book outside of OMG Books Awards at firstbook.org/join. For more information, please visit firstbook.org or follow the latest news on Facebook and Twitter.

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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.”

About First Book

Founded in Washington, D.C., in 1992 as a 501(c)3 nonprofit social enterprise, First Book is a leader in the educational equity field. Over its 27-year history, First Book has distributed more than 185 million books and educational resources, with a value of more than $1.5 billion. First Book believes education offers children in need the best path out of poverty. First Book breaks down barriers to quality education by providing its network of more than 450,000 registered teachers, librarians, after school program leaders, and others serving children in need with millions of free and affordable new, high-quality books, educational resources, and basic needs items through the award-winning First Book Marketplace nonprofit eCommerce site. The First Book Network comprises the largest and fastest-growing community of formal and informal educators serving children in need.

First Book also expands the breadth and depth of the education field through a family of social enterprises, including First Book Research & Insights, its proprietary research initiative, and the First Book Accelerator, which brings best-in-class research to the classroom via relevant, usable educator resources. First Book Impact Funds target support to areas of particular need, such as rural communities or increasing diversity in children’s books.

For more information, visit firstbook.org or follow the latest news on Facebook and Twitter.

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Nebraska Library Commission Announces Public Library Accreditation

NLC Logo

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
January 10, 2020

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Christa Porter
402-471-3107
800-307-2665

Nebraska Library Commission Announces Public Library Accreditation

Nebraska Library Commission Library Development Director Christa Porter recently announced the accreditation of Sixty-one public libraries across Nebraska. Porter stated, “We are dedicated to helping Nebraska libraries meet Nebraskans’ information needs, opening up the world of information for citizens of all ages. The Library Commission continues to work in partnership with Nebraska libraries and the regional library systems, using the Public Library Accreditation program to help public libraries grow and develop.”

Public libraries in Nebraska are accredited for a three-year period. To learn more about this process and to see a complete list of all accredited Nebraska public libraries, go to http://nlc.nebraska.gov/LibAccred/Standings.asp.

The Nebraska Library Commission congratulates the public libraries listed below as they move forward toward the realization of this vision for the future: “All Nebraskans will have improved access to enhanced library and information services, provided and facilitated by qualified library personnel, boards, and supporters with the knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes necessary to provide excellent library and information services.”

Nebraska Public Libraries Accredited through December 31, 2022:

  • Alliance Public Library
  • Ashland Public Library
  • Atkinson Public Library
  • Rock County Public Library (Bassett)
  • Beaver City Public Library
  • Bellevue Public Library
  • Dundy County Library (Benkelman)
  • Blair Public Library & Technology Center
  • Blue Hill Public Library
  • Garfield County Library (Burwell)
  • Butler Memorial Library (Cambridge)
  • Ceresco Community Library
  • Creighton Public Library
  • Crete Public Library
  • Hruska Memorial Public Library (David City)
  • Jennifer Reinke Public Library (Deshler)
  • John Rogers Memorial Library (Dodge)
  • Elgin Public Library
  • Elwood Public Library
  • Exeter Public Library
  • Fairmont Public Library
  • Falls City Library & Arts Center
  • Gering Public Library
  • Gordon City Library
  • Gretna Public Library
  • Hemingford Public Library
  • Bruun Memorial Library (Humboldt)
  • Grant County Library (Hyannis)
  • La Vista Public Library
  • Leigh Public Library
  • Lexington Public Library
  • Nancy Fawcett Memorial Library (Lodgepole)
  • Lyman Public Library
  • McCook Public Library
  • Mead Public Library
  • Neligh Public Library
  • North Bend Public Library
  • North Platte Public Library
  • Oakland Public Library
  • Omaha Public Library
  • Orchard Public Library
  • Ord Township Library
  • Osceola Public Library
  • Oxford Public Library
  • Paxton Public Library
  • House Memorial Library (Pender)
  • Plattsmouth Public Library
  • Plymouth Public Library
  • Baright Public Library (Ralston)
  • Seward Memorial Library
  • Shelby Community Library
  • Sidney Public Library
  • Stanton Public Library
  • Sutton Memorial Library
  • Lied Tekamah Public Library
  • Valparaiso Public Library
  • Wauneta Public Library
  • Lied Lincoln Township Library (Wausa)
  • Wayne Public Library
  • Wymore Public Library
  • Kilgore Memorial Library (York)

The Nebraska Library Commission would also like to congratulate two of these libraries on earning accreditation for the very first time. Those libraries are:

  • Garfield County Library (Burwell)
  • Plymouth Public Library

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.”

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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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NCompass Live: Libraries and the LGBT+ Experience

Learn how your library can be more welcoming through the experiences of the Olean Public and Cuba Circulating Libraries on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar, ‘Libraries and the LGBT+ Experience’ on Wednesday, December 4, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

These organizations are creating a more welcoming environment for the LGBTQIA community with programs, resources, and staff training.

Presenters: Tina Dalton, Library Director, Cuba (NY) Circulating Library, and Jennifer Stickles, Manager, Salamanca (NY) Public Library.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Dec. 11 – Librarian in Training – For Kids!
  • Dec. 18 – Advocates of All Ages: Recruiting and Retaining Younger Generations as Trustees and Friends
  • Tuesday, Dec. 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Tuesday, Dec. 31 – Summer Reading Program 2020: Imagine Your Story
  • Jan. 8, 2020 – Rescheduled due to technical issues – United for Libraries – Trustees, Advocates, Friends, and Foundations: The Voice for America’s Libraries

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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Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 25, 2019

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

Young Readers Invited to Write to Favorite Authors

Young readers in grades 4-12 are invited to write a personal letter to an author for the Nebraska Letters about Literature (LAL) contest, a state reading and writing promotion program. The letter can be to any author (living or dead) from any genre-fiction or nonfiction, contemporary or classic-explaining how that author’s work changed the student’s view of the world. Nebraska Letters About Literature is coordinated and sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book and the Nebraska Library Commission, with support from Houchen Bindery, Ltd., Humanities Nebraska, and Chapters Bookstore in Seward.

The Nebraska Center for the Book’s panel of judges will select a winner and alternate per competition level (Level I for grades 4-6, Level II for grades 7-8, and Level III for grades 9-12) to be honored in a proclamation-signing ceremony at the state capitol during National Library Week in April 2020. Their winning letters will be placed in the Jane Pope Geske Heritage Room of Nebraska Authors at Bennett Martin Public Library in Lincoln. Nebraska winners and alternates will receive state prizes.

Teachers, librarians, and parents can download the contest guidelines, free teaching materials, information on the online entry system, and past winning letters on the Nebraska Center for the Book website. Get inspired by listening to past Nebraska winners, Ashley Xiques and Sydney Kohl, read and talk about their letters on NET Radio’s All About Books (netnebraska.org/basic-page/radio/all-about-books). Submissions must be completed online by January 15, 2020. For more information contact Tessa Terry, 402-471-3434 or 800-307-2665.

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.”

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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 .

Posted in Books & Reading, General, Nebraska Center for the Book, Public Relations, Youth Services | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

NCompass Live: VoteLibraries 2020 – Thinking About Elections and Libraries Without Being Partisan

Learn how to ‘VoteLibraries 2020 – Thinking About Elections and Libraries Without Being Partisan’  on next week’s FREE NCompass Live webinar on Wednesday, November 20, 10:00am-11:00am CT.

Libraries have a natural non-partisan role to encourage and support civic engagements like voter registration and issue-awareness. For example, EveryLibrary is a sponsoring organization and steering committee member for National Voter Registration Day and is the library coordinating partner for National Disability Voter Registration Week each year. Next year, they plan to relaunch #VoteLibraries2020 to help put non-partisan library issues on the local, state, and federal landscape. In this conversation, EveryLibrary Executive Director John Chrastka will talk about these voter-facing public education campaigns and other activities that they have planned.

Upcoming NCompass Live events:

  • Nov. 27 – Pretty Sweet Tech – Design Thinking: How Technology is Made
  • Dec. 4 – Libraries and the LGBT+ Experience
  • Dec. 11 – Librarian in Training – For Kids!
  • Dec. 24 – Pretty Sweet Tech
  • Dec. 31 – Summer Reading Program 2020: Imagine Your Story

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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“All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor” Chosen as 2020 One Book One Nebraska

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
November 12, 2019

FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Tessa Terry
402-471-3434
800-307-2665

All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor
Chosen as 2020 One Book One Nebraska

People across Nebraska are encouraged to read the work of a Nebraskan —and then talk about it with their friends and neighbors. All the Gallant Men: An American Sailor’s Firsthand Account of Pearl Harbor (William Morrow, 2016) by Donald Stratton, with Ken Gire is the 2020 One Book One Nebraska selection.

All the Gallant Men is the first memoir by a USS Arizona survivor. Born in Inavale, Nebraska and raised in Red Cloud, Donald Stratton joined the Navy in 1940 at the age of eighteen. On December 7, 1941 he was a Seaman First Class on the USS Arizona. Stratton’s account of the Pearl Harbor attack is seventy-five years in the making, as he finally shares his personal tale at the age of ninety-four. His story is one of survival and determination as he recovered from the severe injuries he sustained in the attack, and ultimately re-enlisted to fight again.

The Nebraska Center for the Book selection committee found All the Gallant Men to be a valuable part of our understanding of the attack on Pearl Harbor. Because it was written by a survivor of the attack on the USS Arizona, the book includes details that most readers have never encountered in either history classes or through other books about the subject. The book is not only an integral part of our knowledge of December 7, 1941, but it is also well written. As we approach the 80th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack, the committee felt that it was a timely choice for Nebraskans to read this account written by one of their own.

Libraries across Nebraska will join other literary and cultural organizations in planning book discussions, activities, and events that will encourage Nebraskans to read and discuss this book. Support materials to assist with local reading/discussion activities will be available after January 1, 2020 at http://onebook.nebraska.gov. Updates and activity listings will be posted on the One Book One Nebraska Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/onebookonenebraska.

2020 will mark the sixteenth year of the One Book One Nebraska reading program, sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book. It encourages Nebraskans across the state to read and discuss one book, chosen from books written by Nebraska authors or that have a Nebraska theme or setting. The Nebraska Center for the Book invites recommendations for One Book One Nebraska book selection year-round at http://centerforthebook.nebraska.gov/obon-nomination.asp.

One Book One Nebraska is sponsored by the Nebraska Center for the Book, Humanities Nebraska, and the Nebraska Library Commission. The Nebraska Center for the Book 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 housed at and 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.”

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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.    

Posted in Books & Reading, General, Nebraska Center for the Book, Public Relations, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment