Apply now! Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries

The American Library Association (ALA) invites library workers in small and rural communities to apply for Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries.

Up to 450 grants will be awarded in 2021 through ALA’s community engagement funding initiative. Participating libraries will receive training in how to lead conversations, a skill vital to 21st-century librarianship, and receive $3,000 to support community engagement efforts.

Register now for a January 26 pre-application webinar to learn about the application process. The webinar will be recorded. Learn more and apply online by March 4 at

This opportunity is open to libraries serving small and/or rural communities in the U.S. and U.S. territories. The Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) defines small communities as those with a legal service area population of 25,000 or less and rural communities as those more than, or equal to, five miles from an urbanized area.

Selected libraries will develop their facilitation skills through online training, host at least one conversation (virtually or in-person) with community members, and receive funds for related community engagement work. Grant funds may cover a range of expenses, including staff time and collections and technology purchases.

Visit and apply by March 4.

Questions? Contact ALA’s Public Programs Office at

Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries is part of ALA’s longtime commitment to preparing library workers for the expanding role of libraries. The initiative is offered in partnership with the Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL).

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