CHICAGO — The Public Library Association (PLA) is now offering Turning the Page Online, an interactive advocacy training course, free of charge to all ALA members.
In June 2007, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation awarded PLA a $7.7 million grant to develop and provide a national advocacy training program. The program, Turning the Page: Building Your Library Community, equips librarians and library supporters with the skills, confidence and resources they need to create community partnerships, build alliances with local and regional decision makers and ultimately increase funding for their libraries.
This advocacy education, originally designed for public libraries participating in the Gates Foundation Opportunity Online hardware grants program, has benefited more than 3,500 librarians and library supporters across 32 states. Following training, the vast majority of participants were better advocates for their libraries—feeling more confident in their abilities and more excited about advocacy. As a result, more than 98 percent of participating libraries achieved their funding goals. Through the generosity of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, PLA is now able to offer this training to all ALA members.
Turning the Page online is composed of dynamic slides and interactive exercises, culminating in the completion of a 10-part Advocacy Work Plan. It typically takes four-five hours to complete, but can be stopped and resumed as needed. From library directors to trustees—Turning the Page online is appropriate for anyone interested in making a difference for your library.