Welcome to this latest attempt to connect librarians from west-central Wisconsin with each other! Please send in content (booklists, ideas, photos, etc.), and comment on posts so we can help each other. If you were using feedmyinbox to get new posts sent to you before, you'll need to switch to another service (blogtrottr works like feedmyinbox, googlereader is a good blog-reader to try).

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Thursday, May 9, 2013

Youth Services--managing your managers

Do you ever struggle, as a youth services librarian, to communicate the importance of youth services to your managers?  Most libraries in this reason do a terrific job of valuing their youth services (programs, collections, outreach and more) and the librarians who provide them, but sometimes it can be lonely when you feel like the only person who is truly invested in serving youth.  I found this article from American Libraries Direct to be a set of useful reminders about how to improve relations with the powers that be in order to get the respect/funding/freedom to do what you need to do! 

If this is something you struggle with, remember there is a listening ear here at IFLS for you!  I'm happy to help you problem-solve about how to make your relationship with your library's administration more effective for everyone.  Contact me at langby @ ifls.lib.wi.us

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Grant Proposal Writing Tips

One of the things that would make all of our jobs easier is a little extra cash, and people are looking for outside sources of funding for projects and day-to-day operations, particularly when local funding is is short supply.

Grant-writing is one great way to kick-start a new project and get some needed funds to do something you've been wanting to do.  It can be tricky to figure out how to do it, and some grantors demand very rigorous proposals.  Even those that don't demand it are more impressed if you can follow a few crucial steps.

I found a post on the ALSC Blog that has some specific suggestions to make grant proposals more successful.

Remember, IFLS librarians:   if you are interested in writing a grant proposal and need some technical assistance, I'm in your corner!  Contact me (langby @ ifls.lib.wi.us)
and I'll do my best to help.  And the first thing I might do is ask if you've read

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Parents Get It!

If you need to do some advocacy to support the importance of youth services programming, materials, and staff, a new study from the Pew Research Center gives you some great statistics to quote!  Here's one:  Almost every parent (97%) feels it is important for libraries to offer programs and classes.  That's a lot of parents!  Here are some other key findings:
  • 94% of parents say libraries are important for their children and 79% describe libraries as “very important.” That is especially true of parents of young children (those under 6), some 84% of whom describe libraries as very important.
  • 84% of these parents who say libraries are important say a major reason they want their children to have access to libraries is that libraries help inculcate their children’s love of reading and books.
  • 81% say a major reason libraries are important is that libraries provide their children with information and resources not available at home.
  • 71% also say a major reason libraries are important is that libraries are a safe place for children.
Plus, parents are more likely to use libraries than other adults are:

01 parents use libraries
Nice to have some more back-up, isn't it??

Thanks to Marge Loch Wouters and Paul Nelson for the heads-up about the most recent Pew Research Center's study.