New Online Resource Focuses on Children and Teens

Contact: Marci Merola

Office for Library Advocacy

(312) 280-2431


For Immediate Release

January 20, 2009

CHICAGO - A new Web-based resource has just been released that will help library advocates make the case for libraries in the lives of children and teens. “Add It Up: Libraries Make the Difference in Youth Development and Education” is available at .

“A growing body of research and studies now proves what the library community already knows is true: libraries are indispensable in the lives of children and teens. The problem is that until now, it has been difficult to distill all that data into products that library advocates can easily use and funders can easily understand,” says Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of the American Library Association (ALA). “This new online resource does just that. The goal is to help library advocates articulate the positive, transformational impact that public libraries and school library media programs have on children and teens.”

Divided into three age groups, the resource contains top-level talking points, statistics to back them up and links to the bodies of research. This resource is part of the “Advocacy U,” ALA’s new initiative geared to providing tools, training and resources to library advocates to achieve real advocacy goals in real situations at the local level. Learn more at

The ALA Office for Library Advocacy created this project in partnership with the ALA Office for Research and Statistics, the American Association of School Librarians, The Association for Library Service to Children and the Young Adult Library Services Association.

“Add It Up: Libraries Make the Difference in Youth Development and Education” is a work in progress. Updates and improvements will be implemented as new research and information become available.