Civic & Community Engagement

ALA Center for Civic Life
Website: American Library Association
An extensive site that includes links to active library programs, training, resources, and non-library associations with civic engagement programs.

Civic Engagement in Your Library Community: A Guided Tour of the Book-to-Action Program and Toolkit
Webinar: Infopeople
Sally Thomas and Mary Menzel present an archived webinar that introduces you to California’s Book-to-Action program with explanations and real library examples.

The Power of Libraries to Foster Inclusive Civic Engagement
Webinar: National Civic League
This webinar was presented by Chris Becker, Senior Consultant for the Urban Libraries Council and Sheila Umberger, Director of Libraries for Roanoke, Virginia. Their goal is to show how libraries have an important role to play in shaping and leading discussions along with forging strategies and decisions that advance community goals.

Public Libraries and PBS Partnering to Enhance Civic Engagement: A Study of a Nationwide Initiative, 2013
PDF: Public Libraries Quarterly
Anthony Cocciolo examines the question “Can libraries act as places for promoting civic engagement through the use of socially and culturally significant documentaries?”.

Taking Community Partnerships to the Next Level
Website: WebJunction
Audrey Barbakoff, community engagement and economic cevelopment manager at King County (WA) Library System, presented this webinar on May 29, 2018. Her presentation emphasizes building community relationships based on solid relationships, mutual respect, and SMART goals.

Building Engagement

Public Libraries: A Vital Space for Family Engagement
PDF:  Harvard Family Research Project, Public Library Association
The Harvard Family Research Project and the Public Library Association call for libraries to join together with schools and community organizations to establish a system of family engagement that extends throughout a child’s life, supports children and families, and prepares children for success.

Building Meaningful Relationships through Community Engagement
Article: Public Libraries Online
Chloe Van Stralendorff gives an overview of the presentation, Building Meaningful Relationships through Community Engagement, by Maggie Killman and Gabriel Venditti at the 2018 PLA National Conference.

Transforming Library Space for Community Engagement
Webinar: WebJunction
A webinar (plus slides and resources) rethinking how library spaces can be configured to enhance and expand community engagement in the digital ages.

Community Centered: 23 Reasons Why Your Library is the Most Important Place in Town
Article: Public Libraries Online
Julie Biando Edwards, Melissa S. Rauseo, and Kelley Rae Unger provide examples of many libraries that are actively playing different reference roles in their community.  Additional resources are provided for more exploration.

Working with Community Groups

Aspen Institute Dialogue on Public Libraries
Website: The Aspen Institute Dialogue on Public Libraries
The Aspen Institute report, Rising to the Challenge: Re-Envisioning Public Libraries, includes valuable information on community building.

Building Meaningful Relationships through Community Engagement
Article: Public Libraries Online
Article focusing on the importance of community engagement including tips and best practices.

Community Engagement and Fundraising
Webinar: American Libraries Live
Panel discussion on building productive community relations.

Get Out of the Library: Embedding Librarians in Our Communities
Article: American Libraries Magazine
Article that discusses the benefits of “embedded” librarians within community groups.

Effectively Collaborating with Other Libraries and Partners
Article: Techsoup

This Techsoup article discusses the benefits of collaboration with examples of what partners and libraries can do well. Quick downloads include a Planning for Success Cookbook and a Planning for Success Toolkit.

Community Reference: Making Libraries Indispensable in a New Way
Article: American Libraries Magazine
Amy Long, Colbe Galston, Elizabeth Kelsen Huber, and Katherine Johnson talk about different ways that you can build a relationship with other organizations, embed librarians around your community, and provide better services.

Working with Community Action Groups: Local Activism Series
PDF: Raising Voices
Raising Voices workbook provides steps for finding and deciding on community action groups (special focus on groups for women). 

The Little Library that Could (and Did!)
Webinar: Big Talk From Small Libraries
This recorded conference presentation discusses the effect a small library can have on a town in New York.