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Libraries Lead


Libraries Lead
by WVLC Executive Secretary Karen Goff

I love the theme for this year’s National Library Week.    It is both a statement of fact and aspirational.  When I first saw it, I thought about how libraries lead the way to literacy, self-knowledge and knowledge of others, community conversations, and new skills.  Those are good thoughts, but the American Library Association is taking a more exciting and personal approach to the theme.

ALA is encouraging libraries to ask their patrons how the library led them to something of value in their lives.   ALA is doing this on a national level with a chance for one randomly selected winner to receive a $100 VISA gift card and a copy of "Firebird," the Coretta Scott King Award-winning book by Misty Copeland, 2018 National Library Week Honorary Chair.

I’m all for the national effort but think what you could do with this on the local level too. Think how powerful those stories could be in answering the ubiquitous “Are libraries still important?” question.   Paulette Kirby, 2018 West Virginia Librarian of the Year, promoted her “I Love Libraries and I Vote” photo campaign all over Monroe County and brought it to the Capitol on Library Day.   Think of the impact next year if every library included “my library led me to:” messages.  What a great way to celebrate libraries and demonstrate their value.

You can download printable PDFs here: My library led the way to (PDF); The library led me to (PDF).  Graphics to promote Libraries Lead on your social media channels are available here:
I hope every academic, public, and school library in the state will join in this promotion.  Be sure to let me know about all your National Library Week activities.

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