For immediate release | January 7, 2011

ALA awards 150 Great Stories CLUB grants

Reading and discussion program targets troubled teens
CHICAGO – The American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office and the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) selected 150 libraries to receive Great Stories CLUB grants, which will support book discussion programs targeting troubled teens. Among those selected to receive grants, 25 sites will also receive small cash grants to support program-related expenses. Funding was provided for this program by Oprah's Angel Network.
To view the full list of selected libraries and their partner organizations, visit Programs will take place February through August 2011. Since 2005, more than 33,000 books have been distributed to nearly 1,000 Great Stories Clubs, sparking conversations among teen readers in 49 states and the District of Columbia.
Launched in 2005, the Great Stories CLUB (Connecting Libraries, Underserved teens and Books) is a reading and discussion program designed to reach underserved, troubled teen populations through books that are relevant to their lives. Participating libraries will receive 11 sets of three theme-related books to provide to members of a book club. They will also have access to a variety of online resources, designed to help plan and implement programming. All types of libraries located within or working in partnership with facilities serving troubled teens (such as juvenile detention centers or alternative high schools) in the United States and its territories were eligible to apply.
YALSA's Outreach to Young Adults with Special Needs Interest Group selected “Second Chances” as the Great Stories CLUB theme, along with the following titles:
  • “Hate List” by Jennifer Brown (Little, Brown Books, 2009)
  • “Dope Sick” by Walter Dean Myers (Amistad, 2009)
  • “The Brothers Torres”by Coert Voorhees (Hyperion, 2009)

The ALA Public Programs Office promotes cultural and community programming as an essential part of library service in all types and sizes of libraries. Successful library programming initiatives have included the “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion series, traveling exhibitions, film discussion programs, LIVE! @ your library and more. Recently, the ALA Public Programs Office developed, an online resource center bringing librarians timely and valuable information to support them in the creation of high-quality cultural programs for their communities. For more information on the ALA Public Programs Office, visit

For more than 50 years, YALSA has been the world leader in selecting books, videos and audiobooks for teens. For more information about YALSA or for lists of recommended reading, viewing and listening, go to, or contact the YALSA office by phone, (800) 545-2433, ext. 4390, or e-mail,

Oprah’s Angel Network has funded over 200 grants and projects in more than 30 countries around the world in order to improve access to education, protect basic rights, create communities of support and develop leaders of tomorrow. The Angel Network was born from “The Oprah Winfrey Show” and its viewers’ desire to make a difference in the lives of others. The funding part of the charity has drawn to a close, but the spirit of the Angel Network lives on through the stories on its website.To learn more about the history of Oprah’s Angel Network visit:


Angela Thullen