PPO, LEH announce new grants for PRIME TIME FAMILY READING TIME®

Contact: Lainie Castle

Project Director, PPO


For Immediate Release

August 21, 2007

PPO, LEH announce new grants for


Applications now invited from library systems as well as state-level organizations

CHICAGO - Applications are currently available for PRIME TIME FAMILY READING TIME®, an award-winning reading, discussion and storytelling series offered by PRIME TIME FAMILY READING, Inc., an affiliate of the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities (LEH), in partnership with the American Library Association (ALA) Public Programs Office and with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

Statewide organizations including state libraries, state humanities councils, centers for the book and library associations are invited to apply. For the first time, applications are also invited from library systems. Applications are available online and can be downloaded from
www.ala.org/publicprograms. The receipt deadline for applications is November 1, 2007.

Based on illustrated children's books, PRIME TIME is designed to help low-income, low-literate families bond around the act of reading and talking about books. It models and encourages family reading and discussion of humanities topics, and aids parents and children in selecting books and becoming active public library users. PRIME TIME received the 2003 Advancement of Literacy Award from the Public Library Association (PLA), a division of the ALA, and the Coming Up Taller Award from the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities in 2000.

This year, PRIME TIME will add up to 18 sites to its national roster by working with three state-level organizations to present PRIME TIME at four libraries in each state, and two library systems to present PRIME TIME at three branch locations in each system. All PRIME

TIME training and promotional materials now support Spanish bilingual programs for English language learners, and applications that provide plans for bilingual programming will be given funding priority. Previous PRIME TIME award recipients are eligible to apply.

Selected states and systems will receive grant funding and materials to work with library staff to present the PRIME TIME series at participating library sites. Each series will meet once a week for six weeks at participating libraries. Through a discussion leader and a storyteller, children ages 6 to 10 years and their parents or guardians will hear classic children's stories; watch reading aloud demonstrations; discuss humanities themes in each book; and learn about library resources and services. Younger siblings, ages 3 to 5 years, will participate in separate pre-reading activities.

A state or system project director will work with local project teams to present the series. Each local project team will consist of a library coordinator, a humanities scholar, a storyteller, a community organizer/translator and pre-school coordinator to present the activities for younger siblings.

Selected states / systems will receive:

  • Travel, lodging and most meals to attend a mandatory meeting of state/system project directors in New Orleans on January 17, 2008.
  • Travel, lodging and most meals to attend the mandatory training workshop in New Orleans January 18-20, 2008 for the state/system project directors, as well as local library coordinators, scholars, and storytellers. Community organizers/translators and preschool coordinators are not required to attend the training.
  • Twenty-two sets of reusable books and book bags.
  • Stipends for each site’s scholar, storyteller, community organizer/translator and preschool coordinator (maximum of $2,150 per site).
  • Stipends for participant transportation (maximum of $600 per site)
  • Gift books and certificates of completion for participants.
  • Extensive training and promotional materials that support PRIME TIME programming.

Libraries interested in participating in PRIME TIME are encouraged to contact their state library, humanities council, center for the book, library association or system headquarters to initiate an application. Complete information about PRIME TIME is available online at
www.ala.org/publicprograms or

PRIME TIME is based on a successful series of the same name that was created by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities in 1991 at the East Baton Rouge (La.) Parish Library and has spread nationally with funding from NEH. By the end of 2007, over 750 programs will have been conducted in 36 states and the Virgin Islands.

Established in 1992, the ALA Public Programs Office has a strong track record of developing library programming initiatives, including the acclaimed reading and discussion series "Let's Talk About It!," film discussion programs on humanities themes, traveling exhibitions, LIVE! @ your library® and other programs. Recently, it established the Cultural Communities Fund, an endowment created to help all types of libraries across the country bring communities together through cultural programming (
http://www.ala.org/ccf). More than 10,000 libraries and at least 10 million individuals have participated in library programming initiatives supported by the Public Programs Office.

For more information and to download an application, visit
www.ala.org/publicprograms or
www.leh.org. Questions about the grant should be directed to Miranda Restovic, LEH, at
restovic@leh.org or Lainie Castle, ALA Public Programs Office, at