Partners in Planning: A Strategic Planning Approach for Friends Groups

How can partner organizations such as the Friends of the Library support the library’s planning process?  This overview of the Strategic Planning Process will focus on the methods in Strategic Planning for Public Libraries as it applies to one of the library’s key collaborators, the Friends of the Library.

Utilizing the approach outlined in her recent book, author and planning specialist Joy L. Fuller will provide a framework of specific and actionable best practices for how Friends organizations can cooperate with their libraries in the development of strategic plans.

Friends groups have a role in the library’s planning as recommended in the Handbook for Library Trustees of NYS.  The Friends ability to put their own proposed projects into action depends on developing and sustaining the capacity of the organization over time, helping to ensure the success of their library in meeting community needs.  Library civic leaders, both Friends volunteers and trustees, can partner in the development of the library’s strategic plan by engaging in and supporting the planning framework. Involving partner organizations in various stages of the planning process can drive mutually beneficial outcomes that better support the libraries that they serve and their communities. 


Combating Racism in Libraries Part II: Creating Spaces to Educate and Inform Communities

The Public Libraries Section (PLS) of NYLA is dedicated to supporting public libraries and public library staff of New York State. Ethnic Services Round Table (ESRT) has provided a forum for libraries and library staff to share information on ethnic services. IDEAS is the Instruction, Development, Equity, and Access Section. One of the purposes of IDEAS is to create opportunities for growth and renewal by confronting inequities and challenges impacting diverse library patrons and library staff.

United we value diversity, equity, inclusion, and stand against racism, hatred, and violence. To take action, we have collaborated to curate the webinar series, “Combating Racism in Libraries: Creating Spaces to Educate and Inform Our Communities.” These will be thought-provoking hours. The goal of the series is for libraries and library staff to learn, share, and discuss the historical and present-day barriers that communities are facing regarding racism against the BIPOC community. We hope you will join us to learn how we can combat racism together and create spaces for our communities to listen, learn, and grow.


Fishing for Friends - How to Reel in Midlife Adults with Programs

Midlife adults are an active and demographically vast population.  This generation is living longer, staying active, and looking for opportunities to use their impressive skillset in different ways.  Who are these valuable individuals? Are we overlooking them for volunteer opportunities?  How can public libraries tap into this significant cohort? 

We’ll examine the considerations when planning, marketing, and implementing adult programs that will engage adults 50+ with the library and the Friends.  Examples of outreach, formal and informal lifelong learning opportunities and creative community collaborations that can be replicated in your community will be highlighted.  Gain practical tips and ideas to entice and involve midlife adults through Friends-sponsored programming and other library events.

We’ll examine current trends in planning and expanding engagement opportunities to attract midlife adults to your library.  Creating diverse learning opportunities along with thoughtful strategies to entice and retain them as volunteers are a win-win to encourage this growing but underserved population to become involved in activities they can enjoy for years to come. 



Before Friends Become Frienemies

Hear some practical strategies to facilitate positive and productive discussions, working together to avoid potential conflict between the library administration, library trustees, and Friends of the Library.  We’ll discuss some common situations where the community volunteers and library civic leaders could conceivably lock horns.

Understanding styles of conflict and approaches to conflict resolution can help maintain good relationships.  Discover ways to avoid disputes through careful planning, development of a well-crafted operating agreement (Memorandum of Understanding), and drafting thoughtful guidelines for dispersing funds raised by the Friends to provide consistent, essential monetary support for the needs of the library.  Improving your communication skills will help build collaboration and consensus for all parties as they work together for mutually beneficial outcomes for the library.  


Re-Engaging Your Patrons and Community Post-Pandemic

Engaging patrons and creating community awareness has always been challenging for libraries. That has deepened during the pandemic and it is naïve to think that as the pandemic subsides your library’s usage and attendance will return to normal without major efforts on your part.  The session will interactively discuss how libraries can re-engage their communities and residents and what actions will be needed to make libraries a key part of their residents lives again.

In working with hundreds of libraries and thousands of library staff, patrons and community members over the years we have developed an understanding of their concerns and biggest opportunities in terms of engagement and communication. That has translated into a series of tips and solutions to help solve these dilemmas and a collection of creative ways that libraries are addressing them. Best practices including a glimpse into how other industries address these situations and how that may translate into the library environment help provide a starting point. From there, a plan for managing communication in extraordinary circumstances, such as a pandemic or supporting a special event, is addressed. Join us to find techniques keep your community knowledgeable and engaged with your library. No special expertise is needed to participate in this session and all levels of library leadership and staff can benefit from the presentation.



Engaging Your Community with Instagram #libraries

This session will take a deep dive into the many ways that Instagram can be used to engage our communities. Are you new to the platform? Has your library had one for a while but just really don't know what to do with it? Come learn some tips and tricks from creating content for this platform to evaluating for what kind of content you should create!  


Facilitating Conversations

Facilitating conversations is much more than having flip charts and Post-it notes. A lot of it is knowing who is in the room, preparing, and managing personalities. In this conversation, Ron Kirsop will highlight the main strategies he has implemented when facilitating.  


TikTok At The Library

TikTok is the latest social media platform that has teens logging on in droves. Learn how to create a TikTok for your library and how creating short 1 minute videos can reach your teen and young adult audience.


Art of Service

Volunteer work is the foundation that joins charitable service and hard work. While an individual generally does not receive compensation for volunteer hours, the rewards of service go far beyond that of monetary payment. Besides the personal satisfaction and the opportunity to either learn or hone your skills, you will gain a deeper understanding of the community and develop a network of contacts that are useful when searching for that next career move.


Friendly Partnerships Strengthen Communities

Friends are venturing outside the library, undertaking the vital work of networking and partnering with community groups to deliver the library’s message and services to residents. Children’s librarian Jason Poole started the summer “BookBox for Kids and Teens” initiative to bring books to readers unable to visit the library.  This vital project has connected with underserved families and steadily grown community support from the library Friends, churches, schools, and grant-makers in Webster.  In their community, Helen Rados, member of the Friends of Ethelbert B. Crawford Public Library, along with youth librarian Cheryl Jones, have built powerful partnerships and creative collaborations that have increased public awareness of the library, engaged volunteers and increased Friends memberships.


YSS Table Talks - Briefinar Edition!

Join us for a series of four weekly briefinars beginning Tuesday, January 12 at 12 pm.  These short webinars will be short enough to fit in your lunch break but pack an informational punch! Progarams include SRP Crafts, Beethoven, Bach, & Broonx teens, For Felt's Sake, and Quirky Programs for Quirky Teens.


Effective, Efficient Boards and Board Meetings

Are you confused about your roles and responsibilities as a board member?  Whether it’s the Friends officers or the library’s Board of Trustees, all parties want meetings that run effectively and efficiently.  The agenda, minutes, and motions all play a part.  Regardless of the size of a board for a nonprofit organization, there are specific accountabilities the officers and directors must meet.  This review of nonprofit boards’ legal and fiduciary duties will include ways to provide the best oversight possible for the organization, keeping it functioning effectively.  Learn what documents should be kept in your board book, how technology can and cannot be used to conduct board business, and practical strategies for more successful meetings.



Combating Racism in Libraries: Creating Spaces to Educate and Inform Our Communities

The Public Libraries Section (PLS) of NYLA is dedicated to supporting public libraries and public library staff of New York State. Ethnic Services Round Table (ESRT) has provided a forum for libraries and library staff to share information on ethnic services. United we value diversity, equity, inclusion and stand against racism, hatred, and violence. To take action, we have collaborated to curate the webinar series, “Combating Racism in Libraries: Creating Spaces to Educate and Inform Our Communities.” It will be a thought provoking hour. The goal of the series is for libraries and library staff to learn, share, and discuss the historical and present day barrieres that communities are facing regarding racism against the Black community. We hope you’ll join us to learn how we can combat racism together and create spaces for our communities to listen, learn, and grow.


Engaging Millennials as Friends Volunteers

Part one in the Focus on Friends webinar series. How can the Friends of the Library catch the attention of Millennials, drawing young professionals to libraries?  If Friends re-frame their needs to attract these doers and involve them in volunteer work, this generation will become library champions. Come discuss ways Friends organizations can coordinate, collaborate, and promote opportunities for young adults that are both social and make a difference in the community.  Get suggestions on how to target and connect with these potential volunteers who are motivated to make their community a better place by using their skills and expertise to meet the needs of 21st century library patrons.
Original Date: 9/23/2020


Online Dungeons and Dragons at Your Library

Maybe you just heard about Dungeons and Dragons around school or got curious when the kids from the 80's movie ET or the Netflix hit Stranger Things played. Perhaps your library had some D&D Groups that met at your place. Online Dungeons and Dragons will help your groups play together while playing it safe.
Original Date: 8/25/2020


Charitable Planned Giving As A Fundraising Tool

Every library has a gap between annual projected income and the actual cost of daily operations.  A healthy endowment fund that is properly managed can help to bridge that gap as a portion of the income earned from the endowment can be used to fund annual operations or special library needs. How do library leaders balance efforts to secure funding for annual operations with growing and preserving an endowment?  For example, Wood Library in Canandaigua has weathered some tough financial years by focusing on a multi-pronged funding strategy.  Community-based funding, an annual fund drive, fundraising events, grants, and fees for services are all part of the equation; but, it has also benefited from an endowment that is funded by charitable planned gifts from individuals who value the library and want to secure its future.  Learn how legacy gifts can build an endowment fund to provide sustained income for the library over time.  Review promotional tactics to raise awareness about these types of gifts and how to acknowledge and engage these special donors.  Come discuss the elements of effective and coordinated fundraising strategies—setting goals, devising written plans, budgeting, creating a database, dynamic execution, and evaluation—that will result in relationships with people who are ready to make an investment in the library’s future. 
Original Date: 6/9/2020


Engaging Families with Nature Based Library Programming
Learn about ways to engage children and their families in nature based library programs as we discuss programs and partnerships that get library patrons outside of traditional library based programs and into the community. Discover how programs like snowshoeing owl prowls and frog watches connect families with nature and how these programs are collaborations with outside organizations. Also learn how to get your library patrons to enjoy the great outdoors with lending items like bird watching backpacks, family outdoor game lending libraries and more.
Original Date: 1/28/2020



Connecting With Today’s Volunteers to Transform the Friends of the Library: Expectations, Engagement, and Impact
Can a nonprofit transform the way it attracts and utilizes volunteers? Volunteer service is a valuable strategy for community engagement, but traditional volunteer programs in libraries of all sizes need to be redesigned to work with today’s volunteers – many of whom have limited time to give and expect to have their expertise put to good use. Does your Friends group need assistance in graphic design, technology, social media, event planning, leadership, or public relations? How does an organization design roles for volunteers with new skillsets and where do you begin to look for people to fill these positions?
Original Date: 9/25/19

Accessibility and Online Multimedia Content
As information providers, we increasingly use video and audio to disseminate information. This poses challenges but also unique opportunities for reaching people with disabilities. Providing transcriptions, captions and audio descriptions with the media is not a simple task. But with a focus on inclusivity and accessibility, we can produce content that is conducive to achieving our professional mission of lifelong learning while working to eliminate the disparities between persons with and without disabilities.
Original Date: 5/16/19

Enhancing Your Summer Programming with Out of This World Family Programs
From escape rooms to trivia nights, cooking competitions to outdoor movie nights, learn some tried and true family programming tips for any budget. Over a dozen different ideas will be discussed to hold events that both tie into the summer theme and add a jolt of excitement to the annual panic that is creating a summer programming lineup.
Original Date: 4/2/19

Administrative Teams: A New Approach for Friends Leadership
Looking for an alternative to the traditional Friends of the Library leadership model?  Today’s volunteers need flexibility in their involvement in community organizations.  Coming from their work world, these volunteers want to provide input into how a task is completed, focusing on tangible results.  Officer positions in most Friends organizations have so many duties that they are full-time jobs.  It is unrealistic to recruit volunteers willing to devote the number of hours needed to provide careful oversight to such an important support group focused on the community library.
Original Date: 3/19/19

Make Your Mark: Logo Design for Librarians
Logos are a crucial visual element of every brand. As a part of your institutional brand, your logo is the face of your library. This webinar will provide an introduction to the fundamentals of graphic design, including typography and color theory. This session will also provide an overview of logo creation tools, including Canva, a free, online graphic design tool.
Original Date: 2/28/19



Building A Diverse and Inclusive YA Library Collection Webinar
Why is it important for librarians to integrate culturally diverse literature into their collections? Readers need a rich and varied diet of material that reflects the many different ethnic, cultural, socioeconomic, and linguistic groups that make up multiple voices, individual lives, social attributes, and perspectives around the world.  We are the advocates that help expand the borders of this culturally diverse literature, this inclusive literature, to aspects such as physical and mental disabilities, socioeconomic status, different family structures, such as foster families, and sexual and gender identification.  We are striving to curate our collections to be the mirrors and windows of a teen’s life into adulthood.
Original Date: 9/25/18

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality 
Learn about the past, present and future of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, as it relates to libraries.
Original Date: 9/12/18

OGS Green Procurement
Learn about green purchasing and the opportunities that are available for using OGS centralized contracts. This webinar will explain how to use OGS contracts, describe the most frequently purchased green products and discuss the latest trends in green purchasing.
Original Date: 9/5/18

Disaster Planning and Community Resiliency at Your Library
Recent catastrophes have highlighted the important role public libraries play in enhancing their community’s resiliency and post-disaster recovery efforts. Many community leaders now view libraries as ad hoc disaster recovery centers and recognize librarians as Information First Responders. This presentation will help you and your library embrace this new role as Information First Responders, who quickly enable people to get back to work, back to their lives, and ensure recovery of the community’s economic life.
Original Date: 6/20/18

Inspiring Sensory Play: Babies and Toddlers
Engage your littlest patrons with a program that incorporates the Early Literacy Skill of play.  This program will provide participants with instructions on how to implement a sensory program on any budget, explore hands-on sensory stations, and learn how to turn a dollar store pool noodle into several early literacy activities.
Original Date: 6/7/18

30 for 3D: Services, Programs, Tips Webinar
While libraries are increasingly adopting 3D printing technology, they often struggle with building a sustainable model. Our speaker, a 3D printing enthusiast, shares 30 ideas for programs and services, as well as some useful tricks that can save you time and money. Whether you’re looking to bring 3D printing to your library or build on an existing service, you’re sure to find inspiration!
Original Date: 6/5/18

Beyond Bilingual: Making Storytimes ELL-Friendly
There are over 200 languages spoken in New York State and libraries are seeing a growing number of immigrant families at their programs. What do you do when storytime leaders and storytime families don't speak the same language? Learn how Brooklyn Public Library has developed simple strategies and techniques to make storytimes for young children friendly to parents and children who are English Language Learners by creating visual schedules, incorporating simple props, using translated resources, using Plain Language, and more!
Original Date: 5/16/18

Starting or Expanding Immigration Services at Your Library Webinar
Are you interested in learning how to incorporate immigration services into the library? The New York Library Association (NYLA) presents the Immigration Advocates Network (IAN) to share valuable information about their free online tool, immi.org which can be used to expand the capacity of your library to provide people with self-guided immigration legal assistance. IAN will also discuss the ways libraries are currently using immi in its branches.
Original Date: 4/24/18

Best Practices for Management of Friends Boards
Regardless of the size of a Friends group, if the organization has achieved 501(c)(3) status, there are specific accountabilities the Friends officers must meet to keep the organization legally viable.  In this review of nonprofit boards’ legal and fiduciary duties, an attorney from the Pro Bono Partnership will explain ways to provide the best oversight possible for the organization, keeping Friends groups functioning effectively and using their charitable resources appropriately in support of their library.
Original Date: 3/20/18

Introduction to The NY Library Dental Cooperative
This progressive dental program, specifically designed for the library community, has exactly what you have been asking for: No minimum participation requirements, lower costs, variety of benefit options, and dedicated service team and administrative support.
Original Date: 3/15/18



Videography in Libraries
Libraries today have multiple resources relating to video creation and awareness can lead to exciting programs! This webinar will go over many different ways you can utilize the creating of video in libraries, focusing on many of the free tools available. From smart-phones to 3D animation, the video possibilities for librarians are endless.
Original Date: 10/4/17

Make Your Mark: Logo Design for Librarians
Logos are a crucial visual element of every brand. As a part of your institutional brand, your logo is the face of your library. This webinar will provide an introduction to the fundamentals of graphic design, including typography and color theory. This session will also provide an overview of logo creation tools, including Canva, a free, online graphic design tool.
Original Date: 9/26/17

Unemployment Claims 101
When it comes to managing the risk ofunemployment expenses, documentation is critical.
Original Date: 9/19/17

Who is NYSID?
Advancing employment and other opportunities for individuals with disabilities!
Original Date: 6/13/17

Visual Storytelling from Manga to Anime
From manga, to light novels, to anime, learn how stories are told and re-told through different media in Japan. Whether you have a little, or a lot, of knowledge about manga, light novels, and anime this webinar will go over the process by which they are created, distributed, and eventually accessed in the US.  Learn how to select and curate diverse collections of these different materials in your library!
Original Date: 5/17/17

Certifiably Sustainable: A Clear Path Forward for your Library
Original Date: 3/22/17

Connecting Kids and Teens with Healthy Summer Meals: Libraries as Partners Webinar
Are an increasing number of kids spending summer days in your library? Are you looking to bolster your summer and/or afterschool programming? Your library may be the nearest and most welcoming community center and/or trusted public space for your community’s youth. As a valuable community resource, you can nourish kids’ minds and bodies!
Original Date: 1/18/17



Minecraft: Gaming, Literacy and Socialization at the Library
Minecraft has become the program that brought new life into my Children's Department and has become an intergenerational hit.  It brought in a whole new population to the library from school age boys, teens and grandparents.  Hear how this program works and how it sparked new ideas.
Original Date: 10/20/16

Resources to Assist Veterans At-risk of Homelessness
This webinar will present an overview of all services for Veterans and highlight 15 programs that specifically address those that are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless so that you can connect the Veterans and families in your community to these resources. 
Original Date: 9/28/16

VA Fully Developed Claims & You
Learn how you can help a Veteran expedite their VA claim by encouraging them to file a Fully Developed Claim (FDC).
Original Date: 9/22/16

Increasing Veterans’ Access with eBenefits
Learn the basics of the Department of Veterans Affairs’ eBenefits web portal, which allows Veterans, Servicemembers, and eligible dependents to directly access VA benefits and services.  Understanding eBenefits will allow you to assist an eligible user in accessing the portal so they can effectively manage their VA benefits and military information.
Original Date: 9/20/16

Best and Safest Practices of State Unemployment Insurance Financing Webinar
First Nonprofit Group (FNG), has helped organizations across the country save an average of 31% on their unemployment costs since 2010!
Original Date: 9/13/16

Simply Strategic
A simple strategic planning process that any library can implement to build a meaningful strategic plan. The key elements of the process include aspiration-oriented focus groups, a simple community survey, and discussions with internal members of the library.
Original Date: 5/4/16

STEAMing Up Summer Learning
Focusing on ideas and inspiration for integrating STEAM and making into your 2016 Summer Learning programs. Ideas will include programs that have a science, math, engineering, arts and technology focus, including many that also integrate the Health and Wellness theme.
Original Date: 4/26/16

VolunTeen Basics 101
A crash course in recruiting, training, utilizing, and retaining teen volunteers at your library.  Chrissie will cover both formal and informal VolunTeen programs that can be adapted to fit school or public libraries of any size.
Original Date: 2/18/16

Small Library Gauntlet
How do you lead a small library, strengthen local identity, collaborate with larger libraries, and improve workflow with a small staff that does it all? Learn how to effectively navigate this gauntlet.
Original Date: 2/11/16

Exploring Early Learning in Public Libraries
Find out why your public library should make early learning the foundation of their long term plan when it comes to program and service sustainability.
Original Date: 2/2/16



Making the Makerspace
You are inspired; you have the vision, now MAKE IT HAPPEN!  This webinar will share practical tips and plans of how to move your library from idea, to implementation.
Original Date: 10/7/15

Injecting STEAM Into Everything You Do
Want to bring STEAM to your library? Find ways to leverage existing dollars, programs, spaces, services and collections and integrate STEAM components. Don’t worry about reinventing the wheel at your library; just inject some STEAM in to what you already do!
Original Date: 8/25/15

Getting Started With STEAM
This webinar will expose you to the research that supports the integration of informal STEAM learning into your libraries’ programming and services.  Leave armed with a starter toolkit of ideas so you can experiment with STEAM in your library today!
Original Date: 6/16/15

Making- It Is Not Just a 3D Printer
Making in libraries is so much more than technologies and tools.  By focusing on Inspiration, Innovation, and Education, this webinar will introduce you to meaningful and skill driven maker programs for your patrons, students and community members.
Original Date: 4/21/15