Mansfield Opinion

Celebrating National Library Week

First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. All types of libraries - school, public, academic and special – participate. This year’s nation-wide celebrations during the week of April 9-5 include the release of the ALA’s 2017 “State of America’s Libraries Report” on April 10; National Library Workers Day, April 11; and National Bookmobile Day on April 12.

In addition, April is School Library Month, which is sponsored by the American Association of School Librarians, a division of the ALA. The Mansfield Public Library staff will be recognized at the City Council meeting April 10.

“Libraries Transform” returns as the theme for 2017, reminding all Americans that today’s libraries are not just about what they have for people, but what they do for and with people. Increasingly, libraries are places of creativity where people can meet to share a hobby, use a 3D printer, edit a video or use software to record their own music. From the cradle to the grave, libraries provide invaluable resources that serve as a lifeline for billions of users for access to technology, early and digital literacy instruction, job-seeking resources, social services and small business tools.

Here's how you can support your local libraries:

Visit your library;

Show your support on social media;

Participate in Take Action for Libraries Day.

The ALA will launch Take Action for Libraries Day, a national library advocacy effort observed for the first time this year April 13. The ALA encourages librarians, library workers and patrons to advocate for full funding of the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which will safeguard federal funding for our nation’s libraries.

Our hope is that advocates will fight for libraries by calls to their legislators to ask for full support of IMLS funding.

Our own public library has received 11 Excellence in Libraries awards. You are invited and encouraged to come and see for yourself what a wonderful library we have right here in our city. And when you come, be sure to say “thank you” to the library staff for their dedication and work in making the Mansfield Public Library one we can be proud of.

Carol Ann Grantham, President

Friends of the Mansfield Public Library