Webinar recording

Format: Webinar, original date December 3, 2014
Hosted by: NCompass Live, Nebraska Library Commission
Length: 1 hour

Northlake (IL) Public Library District has seen a dramatic demographic shift over the last twenty years. More than half of the service community speaks Spanish at home and as many as one third are foreign born. To address the changing needs of their community, Northlake Public Library District has hired bilingual staff and added many bilingual programs. One pressing issue that directly affects this community is the U.S. immigration policy and getting accurate information on these policies. This session will focus on how Northlake Public Library District has incorporated legal information on temporary driver's licenses, Deferred Action, and citizenship into its library programming.

Presented by: Kathy Ladell

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date July 7, 2016
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

If you want to attract Latino and Spanish-speaking families to your library, the instinct is to launch a bilingual or Spanish-language storytime. It’s the “if we build it, they will come” logic for attracting community members who are not being served by the library. Libraries may be disappointed to discover that it doesn’t necessarily work that way. In this webinar, recognize the critical role that outreach plays in bridging the gap between Latino and Spanish-speaking families and library services. Hear real-world examples of outreach strategies from librarians who successfully connected with their Latino and Spanish-speaking communities, and learn a basic outreach process that you can adapt for your own community.

Presented by: Katie Scherrer and Lauren Simon

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date November 1, 2017
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

In the United States, 1 in every 8 people face hunger. Food insecurity affects 42 million people and impacts every county in America, and libraries are increasingly involved in helping to fight hunger in their communities. Join us to hear how Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief network, a food bank, and a public library, are all helping to fight hunger. Learn how to assess food security and needs in your area and how to grow community awareness and understanding about hunger through programming or resources. Providing meals can become a key component of library programming, even serving as an incentive for families and children to attend. Explore a range of opportunities to address community hunger needs year-round, and learn how to reach out and engage with local food banks to connect patrons to food.

Presented by: Christina Martinez, Kaia Keefe-Oates, and Elizabeth Lynch

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date May 11, 2017
Hosted by: WebJunction and Library Journal
Length: 1 hour

There is much more to supporting immigrants and refugees than hanging out a "welcome" sign at your library. Successful programs and services are specifically tailored to meet the needs of the range of populations who may come through your doors. Hear from Movers & Shakers who work with communities to empower vulnerable and often underserved populations with a sense of belonging and self-reliance. Learn innovative approaches to identifying and celebrating immigrant leaders; how to foster networking between native-born and newcomer populations and between immigrant groups of varying national origins; how to highlight immigrant-positive narratives; and more. You'll be sure to find practical ideas among the multi-pronged strategies that these librarians have used to ensure that new immigrants really do feel welcomed by the library and the community.

Presented by: Will Chan, Jamie Torres and Sophie Maier

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date January 15, 2013
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

What does an ice cream sundae have to do with library partnerships? Let's pretend that your community organizations (school, academic, public and special libraries, and other local organizations) are your favorite kind of ice cream. Now let's ladle your favorite toppings over the ice cream to represent the organizations resources, programs, personnel and funding. How can the ice cream "mix" with the toppings to be the most luscious dessert possible for the most people? When community organizations collaborate to share their resources with one another, they make the biggest possible impact on the most lives. Learn easy, understandable and powerful strategies that will give you renewed energy to create bold and imaginative collaborations among all types of community organizations.

Presented by: Kathy Jacobs

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date April 18, 2017
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

To "choose civility" means to celebrate diversity and choose respect, compassion, empathy, and inclusiveness when interacting with others. Civility is the healing power we need to counteract the divisive, fragmented forces that seem to be undermining our social fabric. Since 2006, Howard County Library System (MD) has been leading the way toward community connectedness with their Choose Civility initiative. They, along with library systems across the country, invite you to join the movement to nurture civility in your own community. Learn how kindness creates communities, how to challenge stereotypes effectively, and cultivate random acts of civility. Find opportunities to implement Choose Civility to enhance internal and external customer service, develop partnerships and community support, and create a more connected community of people who will #choose2Bkind. Let’s see civility go viral in 2017.

Presented by: Valerie Gross, Christie Lassen and Sonya Durney

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date March 20, 2014
Hosted by: WebJunction and the Association for Rural and Small Libraries
Length: 1 hour

Are you looking for fresh ways to connect your library with your community? Find out how these Nebraska libraries moved beyond traditional partnerships by uncovering shared commitment to community needs with new partners, especially local businesses. These new connections led to programming and events that promote health, literacy and entertainment for the whole community. The efforts extend the library's marketing reach, build library support, and strengthen community relationships all at little or no cost.

Presented by: Becky Baker, Scott Childers, and Lisa Olivigni

Self Paced CourseFormat: Self-paced Course
Developed with: Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Length: 1 hour

The library of the 21st Century is considered an essential part of its community. With that in mind the director and staff need to "get out of the stacks and into the streets!" Being involved in organizations and activities outside of the library provides a unique perspective to both staff and trustees in regard to the culture and needs of the community.

Community engagement, while it may have a different meaning depending upon your role in the library, is reaching outside of the physical library building, meeting people in the community and listening to them. There are many roles to play and you can monitor your level of involvement based on your capacity. Community engagement activities provide an opportunity to offer the library as a solution to issues, or at least as a potential partner to help tackle issues. This can be accomplished through building relationships and sharing ideas and library resources, whether that is space, staff or other assets to accomplish a common goal.

Course Design: Produced through the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA) Continuing Education Connector project.

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date January 28, 2016
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1.5 hours

In this interactive session, we will explore what it means to provide inclusive outreach to and engagement with members of your local community. How do you identify the needs of the diverse communities your library is serving? What are effective approaches for community engagement, and how do you apply what you learn along the way to improve your practice? Come prepared with a challenge or opportunity from your own community that you would like to workshop with your peers during the webinar. You will also leave with a framework and action plan for cultivating partnerships for successful community engagement.

Presented by: CiKeithia Pugh, Hayden Bass, and Rekha Kuver

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date July 17, 2018
Hosted by: WebJunction and TechSoup for Libraries
Length: 1 hour

As of 2016, more than 43 million immigrants were living in the US, and that number is growing. Immigration can breathe new life into the local economy as young workers replace retiring baby boomers, open new businesses, and become active consumers. Libraries can ease immigrants’ transition into the community by acting as a resource hub. Asset mapping encourages libraries to go out into their communities and uncover and assess the resources available to immigrants. The information they gather gives the insight libraries need to develop programming to serve these patrons and help them thrive. This webinar will discuss how asset mapping can facilitate community entry for immigrants by helping libraries better understand the needs of this population and address those needs through service and program development.  

Presented by: Heather MacKenzie, Amanda Fullerton and Kenneth Williment

webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date February 6, 2018
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

For too many children and teens, summer is a time of hunger and learning loss. Libraries offer the perfect environment to combat childhood hunger and obesity while preventing summer learning loss by offering free, healthy lunch to kids through the USDA Summer Food Service Program. In California, Lunch at the Library was developed to provide tailored support to library staff, offering tools to develop successful public library summer meal programs that draw new families to the library, foster community partnerships, and engage families with learning and enrichment opportunities while school is out. Join us for this webinar to learn about the tools and practical tips for starting or expanding a USDA summer meals site and incorporating lunches into your summer reading program. Even if you’ve been offering summer lunches for years, you’ll come away inspired and ready to plan.

Presented by: Trish Garone, Patrice Chamberlain, and Jasmin LoBasso

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date December 6, 2012
Hosted by: WebJunction and the Association for Rural and Small Libraries
Length: 1 hour

The PEARL (Promoting and Enhancing the Advancement of Rural Libraries) Project has been successful in helping Texas rural librarians reach out to groups and organizations in their communities and to raise visibility of and appreciation for their libraries. Community outreach plans, designed to identify and fill a need in the community, are at the heart of this unique model. The process is supported by an actionable template which leads participants from community assessment, through strategic planning, to implementation, and concludes with evaluating outcomes. This webinar explores the outstanding results achieved by participants in the PEARL project and share how community outreach plans have led to unexpected outcomes and some surprising results.

Presented by: Barbara Blake and Louise W. Greene

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date March 2014
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

Developed and funded by Redbox, and managed by OCLC in partnership with Project for Public Spaces, Outside the Box is an innovative program that brings people together for free, fun entertainment events in their local community. When people connect, communities benefit--and as trusted community anchors, public libraries are central to Outside the Box efforts.


  • Part 1: What is placemaking?
  • Part 2: Turning your event into a great place experience
  • Part 3: How to conduct a community brainstorming session


  • Identify a space near the library, on the library grounds, or in the community that can be used for ongoing public entertainment events
  • Lead a community brainstorming or planning session on event/place design
  • Identify at least three new community partners and an action plan for engaging with them
  • Develop a list of reusable materials and features that can be used in the community space, to create a welcoming, comfortable environment (seating, tables, surface cover, shading, lighting, etc.)

Presented by: Elena Madison

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date June 9, 2016
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

When public library and health library expertise combine, amazing things can happen. The MS Buddy service was created by three public library staff members and one health sciences librarian in Utah to connect patients with multiple sclerosis to accurate information and to each other through the use of the mobile technology. Join this webinar to learn about this innovative collaboration, its impact, and ways you can build buy-in for health programming at your library. MS Buddy co-creators will share strategies for identifying sustainable solutions for priority health topics, and provide guidance for working together effectively across library disciplines and locations. Participants will be introduced to the program toolkit, which they can use in planning and partnering to implement similar projects in their communities.

Presented by: Erica Lake, Katie Larsen, Casey Cox, and Liesl Seborg

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date September 26, 2011
Hosted by: WebJunction and Library Journal
Length: 1 hour

While public libraries are generally viewed as inclusive spaces, there are large segments of community that do not use them. Beginning in 2004, four large urban library systems from across Canada - Vancouver, Toronto, Regina and Halifax Public Libraries - spent four years working in socially excluded communities, to determine how to make public library services relevant to the needs of underserved communities. As a result, it was discovered that when communities are involved in the identification, development and delivery of library services, there can be an exhilarating effect. Since the conclusion of the highly successful Working Together Project (2004-2008), public libraries from across Canada have integrated community-led approaches and techniques. This webinar, brought to you in collaboration with Library Journal, will discuss the major outcomes of the project and provide examples of how the bringing this approach into library service planning makes libraries even more relevant to local needs.

Presenters: Tracey Jones-Grant, Kenneth Williment, and Randy Gatley.

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date September 15, 2016
Hosted by: WebJunction
Length: 1 hour

Economic development and job opportunities are concerns in most communities, and thriving small businesses are important to ensuring a community's economic health. Join the Small Business Information Center (SBIC) Librarian from the Cecil County Public Library (CCPL) to learn how your library can be a part of the formula for building and supporting a stronger local economy. You'll learn how CCPL has developed the SBIC since its inception in 2003, growing from a shelf of books to a personalized service, with examples and lessons they’ve learned along the way.

Find out how your library can be an excellent resource for aspiring and experienced business owners. This session will cover the basics of collection development, classes, marketing, partnerships and more. Hear how libraries are not only helping launch small businesses, but as these businesses continue to thrive, they are able to give back to the community.

Presented by: Laura Metzler

Webinar recordingFormat: Webinar, original date April 21, 2015
Hosted by: WebJunction and TechSoup
Length: 1 hour

Every day, patrons enter libraries around the country with questions about health, housing, employment, counseling and other essential human services. And libraries are there to make these crucial connections for them. Many libraries are now exploring ways to expand their role as connector to community social services through resources such as webpages, mobile apps, and databases. These services might refer somebody to a free meal, legal assistance, support groups, and much more. Join us to hear examples of how referral services and resources have augmented the social services connections that contribute to community vitality.

Presented by:  Suzanne Moore, Diane Adams,and Jasmine Africawala