Advocacy for the New Year (Fall 2012 Issue)

Fantastical iPhone app January 2013The fall issue of YALS focuses on advocacy with four articles featuring helpful, hands-on tips for librarians who work with teens. On January 1st, 2013 why not make a resolution to make advocacy something you are active in throughout the year. Why not:

  • Make a calendar of advocacy activities that you want to participate in? Write down an advocacy related activity for each week of the year or if that seems like too much to start with, make it one advocacy activity a month.
  • Regularly talk with others about what they are doing to advocate for teen library services? You’ll get ideas on what you can do and maybe find out you are already advocating without even realizing it.
  • Use social media – Twitter, Facebook, etc. – to help advocate for teen library services? Why not post at least once a week on your social media presence something about why what you do with teens in libraries is important to teens and the community? Use an advocacy hashtag, like #yaadvocacy, to help organize your posts. Continue reading

Combining Advocacy and Marketing (Fall 2012 Issue)

Sometimes it’s hard to separate advocacy from marketing. Advocacy should focus on the why of what we do for teens. Why the services we provide to adolescents are valuable. Marketing is about selling what we do. The how and when of services to teens. There is overlap between the two and there are ways to combine them to better inform community members, and get the word out, about what you do and why you do it.

It’s easy to forget how important displays are in advocacy and marketing. Displays bring people into the collection, perhaps highlighting books they didn’t know (or had forgotten). They show the breadth of the collection and the range of expertise involved in curating books. They help demonstrate the value of the library to teens because they show the range of what the library can provide. Don’t forget that displays don’t have to just be about books: they can include artifacts, newspapers, local crafts, photographs and more. This helps to market the wide-array of resources libraries connect teens to and shows the library as being more than about books – which helps to advocate for teen services beyond the traditional focus of libraries.
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What Does it Mean to Advocate Throughout the Day? (Fall 2012 Issue)

The fall issue of YALS focuses on advocacy with four articles featuring helpful, hands-on tips for librarians who work with teens. In her article on how great teen librarians make great library advocates, Maureen Hartman talks about building partnerships in the community in order to advocate for teens and the services for them. Heather Gruenthal covers the A to Z of being a teen advocate in a school library. What about advocating every hour of the work-day with and for teens? Is that possible too?

In the YALSA book, Being a Teen Library Services Advocate I talk about 24/7 advocacy and include an hourly overview of what a library staff member serving teens might work on during the day and how each activity can include an advocacy piece. The overview looks like this (You can zoom in or pop-open the pdf file to get a better view.):
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10 Quick Tips for Advocacy (Fall 2012 Issue)

The fall issue of YALS focuses on advocacy. There are several articles with tips to help library staff serving teens advocate for what they do. As a companion to those articles, YALS asked Christian Zabriskie to let us know his 10 tips for successful advocacy efforts. Christian is a member of the Board of Directors of YALSA, is the CEO of Urban Librarians Unite, and is the Co-author of Grassroots Library Advocacy: A Special Report available from ALA Editions.

  1. Know Who To Talk to and When: Who are the decision makers you need to influence and when will they be making their decisions? There is no point harassing people who cannot give you what you want and even the right people might be useful to you for a short window of time. Do some homework so you don’t waste your time and energy before talking to the right person at the right time. Continue reading

Hone Your Advocacy Skills Alphabetically (Fall 2012 Issue)

In the fall issue of YALS, with the theme of advocacy, Heather Gruenthal’s article, A School Library Advocacy Alphabet, provides readers with a wealth of information on how school library staff (and others that work with teens actually) can advocate for their libraries and for teens every day of the year. Heather covers the meaning of advocacy, the importance of branding, collaboration, telling your story, elevator pitches, and even why photocopying is important. She also provides a really useful list of resources for anyone to use to learn about advocacy and learn how to hone their advocacy skills. Here’s what’s on her list:

Hennepin County Library Speaks Advocacy Through Video (Fall 2012 Issue)

The Fall 2012 issue of YALS includes an article by Maureen Hartman (Coordinating Librarian for Youth Literacy and Learning at the Hennepin County Library) titled Good Teen Librarians Make Great Library Advocates. The article focuses on the ways library staff working with teens can build relationships and partnerships in order to advocate successfully for the age group. Not only are staff at the Hennepin County Library building collaborations, partnerships, and relationships they are also producing videos to help get the word out about the importance of serving teens in libraries.


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YALS Fall 2012 It’s All About Advocacy

Soon YALSA members (and YALS subscribers) will see the fall issue of YALS in their mailboxes. The theme of the issue is advocacy and it’s filled with articles on the importance of speaking up for teens in school and public libraries. For example:

  • Maureen Hartman, Hennepin County (MN) Library, writes about how building partnerships with community organizations can help you to advocate for young adults.
  • Heather Gruenthal, Anaheim (CA) School District, provides an A-Z on how to be a strong advocate for teens in the school community.
  • Ellin Klor, Santa Clara (CA) City Library, talks teen parenting and how a strong program for teen parents helps those working with the age group to advocate for the age group.
  • Krista King, Boone County (KY) Public Library, lets readers know how teens got involved in her library’s strategic planning process and as a result spoke up for themselves in the library and the community.

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