Friday, January 27, 2012

Sara Lee Foundation

The Sara Lee Foundation utilizes an online Letter-Of-Intent (LOI) and invitational Request-For-Proposal (RFP) system.

Step 1: Determine if your organization meets the eligibility requirements (Eligibility requirements = Legal nonprofit with a mission that clearly addresses one of the Foundation’s focus areas (defined as: 
  • domestic hunger
  • healthy weight through energy balance
  • diverse and highly visible cultural programs
Priority is given to nonprofit organizations located in and serving communities where Sara Lee has a facility.

Step 2: Submit an online Letter of Intent (LOI). There are no deadlines, submission are reviewed as they are received. Preference is given to highly effective projects and programs that have clear goals and which document expected outcomes.  Requests for general operating support are not considered competitive.

Step 3: Await an email notification, sent approximately two to three weeks after the LOI is received and reviewed.

Step 4: (if the proposed LOI is of interest):An Request-For-Proposal (RFP) will be extended.  Decisions regarding RFP’s may take 45 to 60 days once the RFP has been completed and submitted.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

2 NEA grants: Our Town and Challenge America Fast Track

The National Endowment for the Arts has lots of opportunities for agencies to receive grants for arts projects, check the full listing here.

Two that libraries might be interested in are Our Town and Challenge America Fast-Track.

Challenge America Fast-Track grants support projects that extend the reach of the arts to underserved populations. Grants are for $10,000; deadline is May 24, 2012.

NEA will provide a limited number of OurTown grants, ranging from $25,000 to $150,000, for creative placemaking projects that contribute toward the livability of communities and help transform them into lively, beautiful, and sustainable places with the arts at their core. Our Town will invest in creative and innovative projects in which communities, together with their arts and design organizations and artists, seek to:
  •         Improve their quality of life
  •         Encourage creative activity
  •         Create community identity and a sense of place
  •         Revitalize local economies
  Deadline: March 1, 2012.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Library photos/PR

I've been asked about "how to do" library PR a few times lately, which put me in mind of an ALA TechSource ("your source for the latest in library technology") by Cindi Trainor, Coordinator for Library Technology and Data Services at Eastern Kentucky University Libraries.

While part 4 of the ‘Taking Pictures and Telling Stories at Our Libraries,’ Fun with Photos at Library Events got pretty famous, the first three are worth seeing as well.
Part 1  is “Show off Your Library Staff with Great Portraits, Part 2 is Photography Basics covering ISO, shutter speed, and aperture, and Part 3 is ‘A la Mode,’ all about the modes and options on cameras.

Trainor also discusses Flickr extras at Flickr Extras, Stay on Top of the Chaos, and Creative Commons.

Good stuff, free stuff, particular to libraries. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

CT Health Foundation Health Leadership Fellows Program

CT Health Foundation established the Health Leadership Fellows Program to create leaders and change agents through who have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to recognize and seize opportunities to act for health equity.

To close the gap caused by racial and ethnic health disparities, communities need strong leaders who can advocate for policy decisions that influence health-related issues and health care.

"The Health Leadership Fellows program brings together diverse yet like-minded individuals from multiple sectors that are dedicated to achieving health equity. The Program consists of seminars, weekend retreats, a group leadership project, and outside coursework that foster a learning-intensive environment for the participants to challenge themselves and each other."

Twenty participants will be selected for the program. Eligible candidates should demonstrate a commitment to achieving health quality in the state of Connecticut.

Deadline: April 2, 2012.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Wish You Well Foundation Grants

The Wish You Well Foundation Grants support family literacy in the United States by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of new and existing literacy and educational programs.

The board meets an average of four times per year to review and vote on applications; most requests range from $200 to $10,000. Organizations are reminded to base their requested amount on the program's unique needs for funding.

Deadline: ongoing. 

Friday, January 20, 2012

AVANCE Unlocking America's Potential Project (UAPP)

UAPP is AVANCE's grant to "promote positive parenting skills and behaviors, school readiness, parental school involvement, adult education, community economic development, and civic engagement for a simultaneous impact on both parents and children in order to break the cycle of poverty."

If it sounds ambitious, well I guess it is -- and the money is big, too. Awards of up to $50,000 are available; eligible entities include nonprofit organizations serving low-income, high-need Hispanic families.

Details here; the deadline was recently pushed back to January 31.

Here is some of the blah blah: AVANCE's Unlocking America’s Potential Project (UAPP) was created "to expand its evidence-based Parent-Child Education Program across the United States. As part of the project, AVANCE will re-grant funds over a three year time period to twelve qualified organizations serving low-income Hispanic families in order to adopt the AVANCE Parent-Child Education Program model. The UAPP re-grant allows for a one-time payment of $50,000 to selected organizations to help with initial setup costs. AVANCE will also provide intensive training to the staff selected to deliver the program. Additionally, technical assistance will be provided along with monitoring and evaluation visits.  Beyond providing financial assistance to implement the PCEP, UAPP is determined to contribute to the global learning community by facilitating peer networking and creative innovations, while also conducting longitudinal research."

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge

Students (K-12) Invited to Tackle Environmental Issues for the Third Annual Siemens We Can Change the World Challenge

Students and teachers will be awarded grants for replicable solutions to environmental issues in their schools (grades K to five), community (grades six to eight), and the world (grades 9-12).

Deadline: March 15.

The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education, and the National Science Teachers Association designed this program to educate, empower, and engage students and teachers across the United States to become "Agents of Change" in identifying and solving environmental problems.

Teams will be judged on both their ability to create a positive, measurable solution to a local sustainability issue or challenge using scientific methodology and their ability to explain how the solution can be replicated by other communities. Student and teacher/mentor prizes, which vary according to grade level, include savings bonds and school grants.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

2012 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards

The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is accepting applications for the 2012 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards.

The twelve winning programs will receive $10,000 and the opportunity to accept their awards from First Lady Michelle Obama, the President’s Committee’s Honorary Chairman, at a ceremony at the White House. In addition, winners will receive an award plaque, the opportunity to attend the Annual Awardee Conference in Washington, DC in the summer of 2012, and recognition on the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award Web site.

Afterschool and out-of-school time arts and humanities programs sponsored by museums, libraries, performing arts organizations, educational institutions, arts centers, community service organizations, businesses, and eligible government entities are encouraged to consider submitting an application. Programs applying for the award must meet all of the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards eligibility criteria.

Completed applications will only be accepted via the online process. No hard copy materials will be accepted. The deadline for application submissions is Tuesday, January 31, 2012, 5:00 p.m. EST.

Prospective applicants with questions should e-mail or call 202-682-5571.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit

Improving Literacy Through School Libraries, U.S. Dept. of Ed

The Literacy Through School Libraries program helps LEAs improve reading achievement by providing students with increased access to up-to-date school library materials; well-equipped, technologically advanced school library media centers; and professionally certified school library media specialists.

Local education agencies (LEAs) in which at least 20 percent of students served are from families with incomes below the poverty line may apply; given the data on the site, only Connecticut's 'Big 7' are eligible. Still, the public/special/academic libraries should be aware and at the table for discussion. Bridgeport, New  Britain, Windham, New London, New Haven, Hartford, and Waterbury.

Districts may use funds for the following activities:
  • Purchase up-to-date school library media resources, including books;
  • Acquire and use advanced technology that is integrated into the curricula to develop and enhance the information literacy, information retrieval, and critical-thinking skills of students;
  • Facilitate Internet links and other resource-sharing networks;
  • Provide professional development for school library media specialists of PK-3 students and provide activities that foster increased collaboration among library specialists, teachers, and administrators of PK-12 students; and
  • Provide students with access to school libraries during nonschool hours, weekends, and summer vacations.  
Deadline to submit full application: March 28, 2011

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Free webinar! 1/31/12 Outcome-Based Evaluation: How Their Money Makes a Difference

Outcome-Based Evaluation: How Their Money Makes a Difference

January 31, 2012 -- 11AM to 12PM Eastern Time

This webinar will enable participants to articulate results (and predicted results) in a meaningful way to funders who want to know the difference their money makes in the lives of those served. Program managers are increasingly being asked to demonstrate that difference in an evidence-based manner, complete with statistical and anecdotal information. This Webinar is of particular relevance to anyone associated with writing or executing grant based programs. Info and registration here.

Presenter: Nan Carmack, is the Director of the Campbell County Public Library System, Virginia.

Technical Requirements and other Frequently Asked Questions? This presentation uses the GoToWebinar web conferencing software; for more information on technical requirements and answers to other frequently asked questions, please visit the Webinar's FAQ page.

Questions? Please contact: Naomi DiTullio, Distance Learning Consultant. Phone: 512-936-2586. Email: But go easy, she's most likely not interested in hearing from gobs of Connecticut librarians.

FYI: The registration asks for name, email, city, state, organization name and type and your general position. My registration confimration came freakishly fast. Happily, the presenter let me know that the class is "free to all comers."

CE Credit: I found this funny: this Webinar qualifies for 1 hour of Texas State Library Continuing Education credit. 

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Online 2-part webinar: Serving Deaf Patrons More Effectively 2/22 & 2/29

Serving Deaf Patrons in the Library with Kathy MacMillan. $75.

Two-Part Workshop: Wednesday, February 22,, 2012 and Wednesday, February 29, 2012. 12:00-1:30pm Eastern. This is an online event hosted through Webex. Details and registration here.

If you are interested in viewing this event, and there turns out to be a group of interested people, the Division can probably spring for a group rate. ($130 instead of $75). Please let me (Douglas Lord) know at and I will get further details. 

Make your library a welcoming place for deaf people. In this workshop, you will gain an understanding of Deaf culture, learn several useful library-related signs, and be ready to work confidently with interpreters for your programs. Links to video demonstrations and handouts for library-related signs will be made accessible to participants to encourage practice and implementation after the workshop.

Topics covered in this two-part workshop:
•    An overview of the different ways deaf people communicate
•    Understanding and meeting your library’s legal obligation to serve the deaf
•    Strategies for communicating with a deaf or hard-of-hearing person in the library

Tips for finding, hiring, and working with interpreters

About the Instructor: Kathy MacMillan is a writer, American Sign Language interpreter, librarian, and storyteller. She is the author of Try Your Hand at This! Easy Ways to Incorporate Sign Language into Your Programs (Scarecrow Press, 2006), A Box Full of Tales (ALA, 2008), and Storytime Magic (with Christine Kirker, ALA, 2009). She holds an MLS from the University of Maryland, and her library career includes work at the Maryland School for the Deaf and Carroll County (Maryland) Public Library. Kathy presents storytelling programs introducing sign language through Stories By Hand and offers training and resources for enhancing storytimes through Storytime Stuff.

MacMillan, librarian and certified American Sign Language (ASL) interpreter, will guide you in making your library a welcoming place for deaf people.  You will gain an understanding of Deaf culture, learn several useful library-related signs, and be ready to work confidently with interpreters for your programs.  An experienced and sought-after trainer, MacMillan’s programs are praised for their practical focus on common library interactions.  Links to video demonstrations and handouts for library-related signs will be made accessible to participants to encourage practice and implementation after the workshop.

If you plan on viewing this event with a group of 3 or more people, please let Douglas Lord know at; my Division can probably spring for a group rate. ($130 instead of $75.)

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Felloship at Darien Library, CT

The McGraw family has funded the formation of a Children's Librarian Fellowship at Darien Library to honor his memory, through a two-year full-salaried position for a recent Master in Library Science graduate.

Full details

The successful applicant will be employed at Darien Library for two years, commencing approxiately July 1, 2012, with a final employment date of June 30, 2014.

The Fellow will be paid initially at the CT Library Association MLS minimum salary for entry-level positions (for 2012: $50,700) with full benefits, paid membership in CLA and ALA, funding for attendance at the American Library Association Annual Meeting and other meetings as appropriate.

 Applications are due by 5 p.m. on March 30, 2012 

 Here's Hank McGraw, busy on the phone.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Meriden Foundation

The slightly mysterious Meriden Foundation (no web site) gives away a LOT of money each year in grants and scholarships (over $1 million in 2009). Pretty generous!

Though the New Britain and Meriden Public Libraries are listed in some of the available Form 990’s, (see 2009's), I didn't see any others at a glance through the list. 

The Foundation states that ‘requests should benefit the greater Meriden area,’ though I see that some awards are national in scope (e.g., American Cancer Society). i think that's your cue. Perhaps nearby libraries can tap into the generosity? Or, better, band together for a cause that is important to MF and that benefits the whole region? 

Do it!