JAN 28

Community Engagement: Serving Diverse Communities Where They Are

In this webinar, learn how to provide inclusive outreach to and engagement with members of your local community.

This event has passed.

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, Early Learning Program Manager; Hayden Bass, Outreach Program Manager; and Rekha Kuver, Youth & Family Learning Manager, all of Seattle Public Library.

Note: This is a 90 minute session

Access Recording

  • View Recording (You will be prompted to login to our free Course Catalog.)

Webinar Attachments

Related Resources and Links

  • Thrive Washington, Early Learning Public Library Partnership: 2015 Symposium
  • Voices of Homeless Youth: Community Partnerships in Library Training, YALS, Winter 2015, by Rekha Kuver
  • Hayden Bass on YALSA Blog
  • Serving Teens who are New Americans, YALSA Wiki
  • American Factfinder (U.S. Census): http://factfinder.census.gov
  • Kids Count Data Center: http://datacenter.kidscount.org
  • DemographicsNow (Gale Cengage)
  • Reference USA
  • America’s Tomorrow: Equity is the Superior Growth Model (pdf), Policy Link report, Program for Environmental and Regional Equity (PERE) at the University of Southern California (USC)
  • Meet the New America (pdf), presentation by the Generations Initiative
  • Pew Research Center, Foreign Born Populations
  • Estimates of Homeless Individuals (pdf), US Dept of Housing and Urban Development
  • Community Partner MOU Template - SPL
  • Shared in Chat:

    Responses to questions we didn't get to:

  • "Being a little fish in a big pond is a barrier for me. I work for a large library system, and I am only part-time.  How do I speak for the library, or get the library to listen to me?"
    • Hayden: I’d suggest giving yourself permission to start small, with what you realistically have capacity to do and your manager will approve. This year you might just cultivate one or two relationships in communities where you see that your library is lacking connections. Maybe you can do some outreach to get to know these communities better, or even create a small project or program in collaboration with one of your contacts. Decide on one or two positive outcomes you want to see, and figure out how you’ll measure them. Sometimes even small successes that are well demonstrated and well communicated can have a big effect on an organization.
  • "How you coordinate relationship management internally?"
    • Hayden: This is very challenging for big libraries; we’re still working on it here at SPL! We’re in the process of developing a large relationship database to keep track of all of our internal and external contacts, organizations, projects, etc. In the meantime, each Region (our libraries are organized by regions of the city, with several branches in each Region) maintains its own spreadsheet of contacts. When staff from multiple Regions or departments provide services at a single site, we sometimes create informal work teams to be sure that those staff are all keeping each other in the loop about their work.


28 January 2016


3:00 PM – 4:30 PM
Eastern Standard Time, North America [UTC -5]