For immediate release | February 19, 2013

ALA, NEH, USIP seek applications for 'Let’s Talk About It: Muslim Journeys' and 'Public Education for Peacebuilding Support'

Eligible libraries can receive up to $6,500 in program funds

CHICAGO – The American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced an additional funding opportunity for libraries planning to apply for NEH’s Let’s Talk About It: Muslim Journeys programming grants. Libraries and state humanities councils that received NEH’s Bridging Cultures Bookshelf: Muslim Journeys are eligible to apply online for Let’s Talk About It: Muslim Journeys funding at through March 29.

The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) and the Institute of International Education (IIE) will also be accepting proposals beginning in early March for a public education initiative entitled, “U.S. Institute of Peace Public Education for Peacebuilding Support.” Through this effort, USIP will support up to 150 organizations, including public libraries, community college and academic libraries, and institutions of higher learning enabling them to hold events that promote the understanding of international conflict resolution and peacebuilding. Eligible institutions may apply by May 1 to receive up to $2,000 in matching support for programming. In early March, revised information about the USIP Public Education for Peacebuilding Support initiative, including the application, will be available on-line at

Libraries that received a Muslim Journeys Bookshelf are welcome to apply for a USIP Public Education for Peacebuilding award and can use the value of the Bookshelf collection to fulfill USIP’s matching requirement. Canby Public Library in Canby, Ore. is a recipient of both a first round USIP award and a Bridging Cultures Bookshelf. “Both the Muslim Journeys initiative and the USIP support offer a tremendous opportunity to partner with the wonderful programs already established by the Student Peace Advocacy group at Baker Prairie Middle School,” says library director Penny Hummel. The library plans to use the USIP funds to host artist Lynn Takata, who specializes in community-based art projects that address issues related to peacebuilding, and to provide an expert on nonviolent conflict resolution to complement a simulated Israeli/Palestinian peace treaty negotiation demonstrated by the middle school students. Additionally, the library will host screenings of “Koran by Heart” and “Islamic Art: Mirror of the Invisible World,” two of the films included in the Muslim Journeys Bookshelf, for the middle school students.

The ALA Public Programs Office encourages libraries that are involved in the Muslim Journeys initiative to apply for USIP Public Education for Peacebuilding Support, in order to secure matching funds for lectures, panel discussions, forums, and other public events that highlight the Muslim Journeys theme and collection materials, while addressing the goals of the USIP Peacebuilding initiative and its international conflict resolution and peacebuilding mandate. Libraries may use the Let’s Talk About It: Muslim Journeys grant of up to $4,500, the retail value of the Bookshelf collection, and staff time spent on related programming activities toward the USIP’s matching requirement.

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 “Let’s Talk About It” reading and discussion series, traveling exhibitions, film discussion programs, the Great Stories CLUB, 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

The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) is our country’s global conflict management center. Created by Congress to be independent and nonpartisan, USIP works to prevent, mitigate, and resolve international conflict through nonviolent means. Learn more at

The Institute of International Education (IIE) is a world leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. An independent, not-for-profit organization founded in 1919, IIE has network of 18 offices worldwide and over 1,000 member institutions. IIE designs and implements programs of study and training for students, educators, young professionals and trainees from all sectors with funding from government agencies, foundations, and corporations. IIE also conducts policy research and program evaluations, and provides advising and counseling on international education and opportunities abroad.

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities. NEH grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies, exhibitions and programs in libraries, museums and other community places. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at


Related Links

Let's Talk About It: Muslim Journeys


Angela Thullen

Program Officer

Public Programs Office (PPO)