The Library in Your Neighborhood, Community & Schools | Updates

Library services will engage and impact people where they live, work, shop and belong. Opportunities for literacy and learning will be woven into the fabric of everyday life in the Pittsburgh region.

Indicators of Success:

1. The development and implementation of experimental models, such as temporary sites and embedded services, result in an expanded service footprint and increases in standard library metrics.

What We’re Doing
  • Experimental Service Models include:  ongoing modifications and expansion of outreach to Allegheny County Jail, which provides services to inmates and families. Grants have been received to continue this project; outreach to Veterans Place of Washington Boulevard, which provides programs and services to homeless veterans; outreach to Wood Street Commons, which provides programs and services to the homeless; Outreach to Community Kitchen, which provides programs and services to populations facing barriers to employment; outreach to Renewal Inc., which provides programs and services to populations in community corrections; outreach to FOCUS, which provides programs and services to homeless in the Hill District community; bridging outreach efforts back to the Library by coordinating and designing basic computer classes and library tours for various special populations; creating and delivering a workshop introducing library services and programs, as well as concepts based on the Every Child Ready to Read to diverse populations.  All new models include the incorporation of volunteers to increase capacity.
  • Teen Services provides monthly outreach to teens at Shuman Juvenile Detention Center.
  • A fine-forgiveness pilot is under way at East Liberty Gardens, a public housing site in Larimer to reconnect a vulnerable population back to the Library and track engagement over time.

2.)  CLP and the community understand that library service is a shared responsibility as demonstrated through strong partnerships with community organizations and other Allegheny County libraries, collaborative programs and presentations, preservation of community history and inclusive opportunities for all residents to support community-based literacy and learning.

What We’re Doing
  • CLP – BAM! takes place in 30 middle and high school public, private, charter, and parochial schools. These partnerships between educators and CLP staff are giving nearly 20,000 students opportunities to become knowledgeable and familiar with the Library’s many resources.
  • Continued running the Market Square Reading Room program with Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership during summers in 2014 and 2015. Tech team members attended many events at the Reading Room where they tested remote tech trainings, provided information assistance, promoted eCLP and helped users resolve personal device issues.  Participation in Kids Play provides fun and educational activities for young children and their families.  Many schools, day cares and camps attend Kids Play during the summer months.
  • Partnership with Carnegie Museums of Art and Natural History and The Mayor’s Office resulted in an annual Alternative Homecoming event. The event welcomed more than 210 high school-aged teens to a celebratory, literacy-themed evening in 2014.
  • For the third year, CLP hosted CONtact, a pop culture convention for teens.  119 teens participated in this event at CLP-Main (61 more than last year).  To make this program accessible to teens across the city, CLP organized transportation via chartered and PAT buses to the Main Library from several neighborhood libraries.
  • Children’s Services initiated a joint One Book, Every Young Child committee with ACLA Libraries to plan programming activities and training to children’s staff throughout the county to support this statewide program that promotes early literacy development in children ages 3 to 6.
  • CLP supports the Neighborhood Learning Alliance’s Reading Warrior Program by providing resources and professional development for teens reading to children in Pittsburgh Public Schools.
  • The Summer Reading Extravaganza continues to successfully engage about 4,000 regional community members annually with support from about 54 community partners.
  • The Office of Programs and Partnerships implemented monthly Coffee and Connect informational sessions with community organizations to explore ways we can work together and to learn more about their services and the communities they serve.  This has directly led to new outreach programming including new outreach for veterans and Community Human Services.
  • LYNCS completed a pilot for Senior Center Outreach in three city neighborhoods in 2014.  Based on data from a city-wide community scan, expansion is expected in 2015 targeting low-income, isolated seniors.
  • Partnered with Goodwill of Southwestern PA to facilitate Next Chapter Book Clubs, reading and discussion groups for individuals with intellectual disabilities, in three locations.
  • Expanded Let’s Speak English programming to 9 locations across the city.
  • CLP is partnering with Council of Three Rivers American Indian Center (COTRAIC) to provide early literacy activities during home visits.

3.)  CLP is identified as a key partner in ensuring the success of young people; children and teens have access to spaces, materials, programs, activities and staff — within the Library walls and outside of the Library — that support learning readiness, future focus, educational attainment, career exploration and life skills development.

What We’re Doing
  • CLP Director and other staff leaders are participating in community-wide discussions about education in the region.
  • CLP is a key partner with Pennsylvania Humanities Council in Teen Reading Lounge.
  • The Labs @ CLP is providing leadership in digital learning throughout the city of Pittsburgh. That leadership is helping teens interested in creating with technology to connect with additional organizations in the city that can help them reach their goals.
  • CLP–Carrick, CLP–Hazelwood, CLP-Sheraden and CLP–Woods Run served as The Sprout Fund’s Remake Learning Digital Corps Pilot Host Sites, where Digital Corps workers brought quality technology programming to teens, providing an excellent complement to already thriving Teen Services programming in these locations.
  • Teen Services began a Life After High School programs series to provide teens with information about possible career paths and life skills through fun activities.
  • Best Books for Babies, a cooperative project of Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Fred Rogers Company and Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children invited ACLA librarians to serve on the 2014 committee to review and select high quality books that will engage both babies and caregivers.
  • As part of the Children’s Services Technology Pilot, BLAST began using iPads in their outreach to Pittsburgh Public Schools. This led to professional development of educators seeking expertise in app selection and using technology in classroom instruction.
  • CLP facilitates ongoing outreach to Children’s Primary Care Clinic in Oakland, Pittsburgh.
  • Every Child Ready to Read program was delivered to mothers and fathers enrolled in the parenting class at the Allegheny County Jail.

4.)  All city neighborhoods have been evaluated for the need for in-person and virtual library services, and CLP has defined how it can best serve each neighborhood.

What We’re Doing
  • Teen Services completed year two of a longitudinal research study with the help of researchers from University of Pittsburgh’s Center for Learning in Out of School Environments to track the impact of the Teen Services expansion at CLP-Allegheny and CLP-East Liberty.
  • Through the 18-month pop-up library in Allentown the Library was able to learn resident needs and build sustainable partnerships. The work has resulted in commitments from partners including the Birmingham Foundation and Brashear Association to provide ongoing programs and services to the community, transitioning the pop-up library to a community supported Allentown Learning and Engagement Center.
  • Volunteer Services coordinated the creation,  implementation and oversight of LOCAL teams (volunteer supported outreach) for expansion and sustainability of certain types of outreach throughout the city.
  • LYNCS is leading development of system-wide outreach philosophy and best practices through the Programming PEFA in 2015.
  • In Larimer, outreach to East Liberty Gardens included weekly children and family engagement programs during the summer and ongoing computer and career services assistance.
  • A committee of branch managers is defining and mapping service areas to better respond to service needs in all city neighborhoods on an on-going basis.  The committee is focused on identifying underserved neighborhoods.
  • Programming decisions are made based on both internal and external data sources.
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