About Us - Issues

Civic/Community Engagement

Libraries and museums build the civic strength of their communities and providing opportunities for public engagement.

Search the Awarded Grants database for grants to programs that strengthen civic/community engagement (issue areas have only been assigned to grants awarded since FY 2009)

National Initiative: National Medal for Museum and Library Services
The National Medal honors outstanding institutions that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Selected institutions demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service, exceeding the expected levels of community outreach.

Partnership:
StoryCorps
Each year, select museums and libraries receive the National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor for these institutions. Beginning with the 2009 winners,  personal stories demonstrating the ongoing impact of these award-winning institutions are being documented through a cooperative agreement between IMLS and StoryCorps.

Civic/community engagement content on the IMLS Web site:
POTUS AnacostiaLib
President Obama Announces Open eBooks and ConnectED Library Challenge

April 30, 2015 09:41 AM
President Obama announced two new efforts to strengthen student learning by improving access to digital content and to public libraries. Read More

 
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Recipients of Nation’s Highest Museum and Library Honor Announced

April 21, 2015 10:27 AM
IMLS congratulates the 2015 winners of the National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Read More

 
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Thirty Museums and Libraries Tapped as Finalists for National Medal

February 24, 2015 09:28 AM
For 21 years, the National Medal for Museum and Library Service has celebrated institutions that demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service to make a difference for individuals, families, and communities. Read More

 
President Barack Obama answers questions from students during the Discovery Education webinar
Blog Post: ConnectED: Open Books and Open Doors

May 1, 2015 02:01 PM
Yesterday, the President traveled to the Anacostia Neighborhood Library in Washington, D.C., to announce new partnerships to expand access to free e-books for America’s students and to ensure every student has easy access to their local library and the wealth of knowledge and resources it can provide. Read More

 
Teacher Sally Prickett poses with Kwame and one of her students.
Blog Post: Empowering Children through Poetry and Publishing

April 30, 2015 03:02 PM
The Calhoun County Library worked with Newberry Award-winning author Kwame Alexander to provide students from local schools the chance to write and publish their own poetry. Read More

 
Madeline LeCesne speaks at the podium at the White House.
Blog Post: Celebrating National Poetry Month with Student Poets

April 24, 2015 10:32 AM
From the White House to Buffalo, NY, the 2014 National Student Poets have been engaging communities with the gift of poetry. Read More

 
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Creative Aging Engages Seniors through Art


Westchester Library System, a cooperative library system, implemented a Creative Aging instructional arts program to empower community libraries to offer programs providing social engagement and creative expression to active and engaged seniors. Read More

 
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Supporting Trainers to Bridge the Digital Divide


The Public Library Association partnered with the American Library Association’s Office for Information Technology Policy and the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies to develop an online collection of digital literacy resources accessible to libraries, patrons, and other community-based organizations. Read More

 
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Rediscovering History with Needles, Thread, and Caribou Skins


Through a grant from IMLS, the Alutiiq Museum developed a project to educate adult skin sewers on Kodiak Island, recruit new sewers, create educational resources on skin sewing, and enrich community knowledge of the art of Native Alaskan skin sewing. Read More

 
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2014 National Medal for Museum and Library Service brochure


The National Medal is an annual award made to museums and libraries that have demonstrated a long-term commitment to public service through innovative programs and community partnerships. Read More

 
2013 National Medals Brochure cover
2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service brochure


The National Medal is an annual award made to museums and libraries that have demonstrated a long-term commitment to public service through innovative programs and community partnerships. Read More

 
2012 Medal Brochure Cover
2012 National Medal for Museum and Library Service brochure


The National Medal is an annual award made to museums and libraries that have demonstrated a long-term commitment to public service through innovative programs and community partnerships. Read More

 
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Talking Points: From Third Place to Makerspace: Public Libraries and Teens


A snapshot of how public libraries reach out to teens with programs and services. Read More