Build Community

Monrovia Fire Department Builds 'Little Libraries' for the Community

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The number of libraries in Monrovia will soon multiply after the Monrovia Fire Department built five small book exchange boxes that will be placed throughout the city for the Monrovia Reads "Little Libraries" initiative.

Building Tomorrow from the Ground Up

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Prior to the American Dream project, the Jackson County Library in rural Newport, Arkansas, serving a population of 18,000, offered no special services or collections or classes for adult English-language learners. But a 337 percent increase in Arkansas’ Hispanic population between 1990 and 2000 sent a clear message to the library.

The library used funds from the American Dream Starts @ your library grant to hire a part-time ESL tutor and to purchase CDs, DVDs, and workbooks for learning English, as well as Mango Languages online language learning software. Classes grew, starting with students from a local employer. When the word got out about the American Dream project, more and more people started to attend.

Removing Barriers to Access

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El Paso Public Library’s bookmobile makes regular stops in neighborhoods throughout its city of 800,000, where 28 percent of the population lives below the poverty level and one in three adults is functionally illiterate. The library offers classes for adult learners at all branch locations, but lack of transportation makes it difficult for some patrons to attend.

How Public Libraries are a Boon to Small Business

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Libraries from coast to coast have won accolades for being oases in the unemployment desert for millions of job seekers using their libraries’ free internet computers to sharpen their interview skills and sift through job boards. Much less recognized is that many libraries are also making important contributions to the nation’s economic recovery by assisting the job creators in small-to-medium-size businesses.

Nine Reasons to Save Public Libraries

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While the War on Women and Chick-fil-A might be getting all the juicy headlines lately, there’s another issue quietly smoldering in the background noise of this election season. It’s buried under all the campaign rhetoric and doom-and-gloom forecasts about the economy.

Our public libraries are not just threatened this election season. They’re fighting for their lives — and with them, the livelihoods and well-being of hard-hit communities all over the country. Library districts in California, Illinois, Ohio, Nevada, Texas, Washington, and more have measures or proposals to slash budgets in 2012. California alone is looking at 50% budget cuts. Where I live, the library district is facing a 30% budget cut, which will close at least two branches. According to the American Library Association, 23 states are looking to cut library budgets in the most recent fiscal year.

Ketchikan Public Library T.A.G. Teen Programming

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Five years ago the Ketchikan Public Library had little to no programming for teens until we created T.A.G. The Ketchikan Public Library’s Teen Advisory Group turned five this June. It seems that it has all happened so quickly, but if it were a child I’d be sending it off to school in the fall. And I couldn’t be prouder if it were one of my kids—it’s actually dozens of “my” kids, and I am so happy they chose to be a part of this amazing, ever-changing group. I was an advocate of teen groups in the library long before I got permission to start up KPL’s T.A.G., probably since I had been a member of a library teen group when I was in high school. The Mesa Public Library’s Young Adult Advisory Council (yes, we were YAAC) was my second family for several years, and they were a bit more encouraging and empowering than my own. That is probably the reason I am so gung-ho for these groups—I know what they can offer to a teen. And I work very hard to make the Ketchikan Teen Advisory Group a very supportive environment. I tried not to have any expectations when I started the group back in 2007; I just wanted to get the teens into the library and hear what they had to say. And it took a while for us to figure each other out, even though my youngest daughter was a part of that first group.

Bi-State Landscaping Hosts 'Ladies Party' to Support Library

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Lindsay Winkler, of Bi-State Landscape Supply & Garden Gifts, 3112 Pleasant View Drive, High Ridge held a "Ladies Party" April 28 that featured refreshments, a wine tasting, music, massages and goodie bags in conjunction with showcasing many of the flowers, plants and garden gifts carried by the business.

A percentage of the proceeds went to the Jefferson County Library Foundation

“I wanted to do something for the library because my daughter and I are very active library users, said Winkler.”We love the library, and since it’s just across the highway from our business, we are there a lot!”

6 Delightful Pop-up Libraries

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The summer season is nearly upon us, and relaxing in a hammock or on the beach with a good book sounds delightful. Sure you could download a bestseller onto your Kindle, but libraries are all the rage right now. Swing by one of these pop-up libraries to grab a new book and leave one behind for the next person. These little book-lending outposts aren't as formal as their state-run counterparts, but you'll be sure to find an interesting read. If you're feeling ambitious, you could even check out our favorites and start a pop-up library in your own local community!

Delaware entrepreneurs gather in Wilmington

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On February 25, supporters of small business attended a conference to share tools to help emerging ventures succeed and established ones boost profitability.

All who participated in the fifth annual Delaware Entrepreneurial Conference had the chance to network, visit booths of groups and businesses offering a variety of services and get information about the increasingly significant impact of social media.

Public Libraries Around the World

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You might think that public libraries are only found in cities and suburban communities in developed countries, but take one look at this map (PDF) and you’ll realize that they actually exist in many developing countries too. In Kenya: 58 libraries. In Peru: 729. In Indonesia: 1,598 public libraries.

What are all these libraries doing? In many cases, they are addressing their community’s development goals: supporting entrepreneurs in Vietnam, providing vital health information in Nepal and Kenya, or helping their citizens to be engaged, informed, and involved in Honduras and Romania. Wherever they are, libraries drive development.