SCHUYLERVILLE — Schuylerville Public Library has been selected as one of 200 libraries to participate in Libraries Transforming Communities: Focus on Small and Rural Libraries, an American Library Association (ALA) initiative that helps library workers better serve their small and rural communities.
The competitive award comes with a $3,000 grant that will help the Library start a conversation about digital inequity, lack of broadband access in rural areas, and ways that the Library and community can begin to alleviate some of these issues. The Library plans to involve local and state officials in the conversation and hopefully in the solutions.
“We are so proud to be chosen for this amazing opportunity,” said Library Director Caitlin Johnson in a statement. “This grant will allow our library to begin bridging some of the digital divide that our rural area is facing, which has been especially apparent during COVID-19 as we have all had to pivot to remote learning and teleworking.”
As part of the grant, Library staff will take an online course in how to lead conversations, a skill vital to library work today. Staff will then host a hybrid online conversation/survey with residents about digital inequity and local needs and use the grant funds to supply the community with additional wireless hotspots to borrow and an additional Library-sponsored wireless network in
Since 2014, ALA’s Libraries Transforming Communities initiative has re-imagined the role libraries play in supporting communities. Libraries of all types have utilized free dialogue and deliberation training and resources to lead community and campus forums; take part in anti-violence activities; provide a space for residents to come together and discuss challenging topics; and have productive conversations with civic leaders, library trustees and staff.