Nine Libraries Receive 2019-20 Grants to Improve Literacy, Support Community Ties

Contact: Martin Ackley, Director of Public and Governmental Affairs 517-241-4395
Agency: Education

August 27, 2019

LANSING – Nine libraries are receiving funding under two programs designed to improve literacy statewide while increasing public access to books and supporting community partnerships, the Library of Michigan (LM) announced today.

Receiving Collaborative Library Services (CLS) grants from one to three years and their amounts are: Fennville District Library, $110,000; Herrick District Library, $81,450; Muskegon Area District Library, $150,000; and Wayne State University Libraries, $123,422.

The CLS funding supports the following library programs with strong community partnerships, designed to improve services while building their communities:

  • Fennville District Library’s three-year project will provide family literacy support to migrant families in Allegan County in collaboration with the Telamon Corporation;
  • Herrick District Library, in cooperation with other Ottawa county counterparts, is implementing a three-year project to provide Wi-Fi hotspots to improve Internet access countywide;
  • Muskegon Area District Library is partnering with other Muskegon County libraries on a two-year program to develop and provide family literacy support through the Family Place Library program; and
  • Wayne State University’s Arthur Neef Law Library, in collaboration with several other university law libraries over two years, is digitizing and providing broad access to Michigan’s Supreme Court records and briefs.

Receiving Improving Access to Information (IAI) grants for one year and their amounts are: Eastern Michigan University (EMU) Library, $25,000; Fowlerville District Library, $15,669; Howell Carnegie District Library, $25,000; St. Clair County Library System, $22,106; and Western Michigan University (WMU), $23,758.

The IAI grants support the following public and academic library programs designed to: increase access by improving literacy; provide broader access to special or historic collections; or improve digital access and inclusion:

  • EMU Library is implementing a textbook affordability initiative;
  • Fowlerville District Library is expanding access to eBooks through Pop-Up Library Wi-Fi hotspots;
  • Howell Carnegie District Library is digitizing and expanding access to a collection of historic photo negatives;
  • St. Clair County Library System is integrating technology into their countywide services for blind and physically handicapped patrons, allowing real-time descriptions of written and digital text (OrCam); and
  • WMU is digitizing materials from the Gilmore Car Museum and the Richland Community Library for use as a model to develop a regional digitization program.

Individual grantees are listed in their respective grant program section of LM’s Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) page – www.michigan.gov/lsta.
Grant proposals were reviewed in June, peer reviewers met a month later to make funding recommendations to State Librarian Randy Riley, and LM then approved the nine grant recipients.

The CLS and IAI grant programs are funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (www.imls.gov) through LSTA funds allotted to LM.

For more information about LM grant programs, please contact Karren Reish at reishk@michigan.govor 517-241-0021.