Three libraries selected for fourth annual ALSC Bookapalooza program

Contact: Jenny Najduch
ALSC Marketing Specialist
(312) 280-4026
JNajduch@ala.org

NEWS
For Immediate Release,
February 10, 2010

CHICAGO—The Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) has announced the winners of the fourth annual Bookapalooza program. The three libraries selected to receive a collection of children’s materials are the Foundation Schools (Md.); Monterey (Calif.) County Free Libraries; and the Richmond (Calif.) Public Library.

The collections consist of books, videos, audiobooks and recordings produced in 2009 and submitted by children’s trade publishers for the 2010 award and media evaluation committees. Intended to help transform each library’s collection, the Bookapalooza award provides an opportunity for communities to use these new materials in creative and innovative ways. The Bookapalooza program aligns with ALSC’s core purpose of creating a better future for all children through libraries.

The Foundation Schools serve approximately 400 children and adolescents, in grades one through 12, who suffer from an emotional disability. Students are referred to the Foundation Schools when the public schools have exhausted all other options to meet their special needs; in addition to emotional and behavioral problems, many students who come to the school have fully diagnosed learning disabilities or learning deficits, a history of school failure and deficits in the essential skills necessary for school success. Currently, the school’s library is small and outdated, leaving students uninspired and uninterested. The Bookapalooza collection will transform the library into something students can use both academically and recreationally, aiding in the success of students at the Foundation Schools.

The Monterey (Calif.) County Free Libraries in Greenfield, Calif., serve a large Oaxacan community, which presents a number of challenges and struggles. Oaxacans come from Chiapas, the poverty-stricken region in Mexico bordering on Guatemala. Due to their isolation in the mountains, poverty and lack of schooling in Mexico, many Oaxacans in the community do not speak Spanish or English; the languages they speak identify their Oaxacan subgroups. The Bookapalooza grant will help the library meet the challenges the marginalized Oaxacan immigrant community confronts as it seeks to integrate into American society.Â

The city of Richmond, Calif., struggles with high-rates of crime, violence and poverty. For many children, it is hard for children to get to the library, but luckily the library comes to them.  The library has had a bookmobile since 1947, and the current vehicle has been in service since 1996. Over the past two years, the bookmobile has serviced, on average, 4,500 children a month. With an extremely limited budget, it has been very challenging for the bookmobile librarians to keep up with the collection needs of the community. By winning the Bookapalooza award, the bookmobile will be able to replace its older books and allow more books to go out on loan in the community.

ALSC, a division of the American Library Association (ALA), is the world’s largest organization dedicated to the support and enhancement of library service to children. With a network of more than 4,200 children’s and youth librarians, literature experts, publishers and educational faculty, ALSC is committed to creating a better future for children through libraries. To learn more about ALSC, visit ALSC’s Web site at www.ala.org/alsc.

Members of the 2010 ALSC Grant Administration Committee include: Linda Ernst, King County (Wash.) Library System; Lynn Piper Carpenter, Birmingham (Ala.) Public Library; Stacy Dillon, LREI, N.Y.; Peter Howard, Louisville (Ky.) Free Public Library; Richard Michael Kerper, Millersville University, Pa.; April Mazza, Wayland (Mass.) Free Public Library; Stephanie Ann Simpson, N.C.; Margie Stern, Delaware County (Pa.) Library System; and Tracy-Lyn Van Dyne, Connetquot (N.Y.) Public Library.