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:
National Medal Image
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

 
USCIS-IMLS Present Webinar for Public Librarians on Human Trafficking Prevention

February 6, 2015 11:23 AM
Learn about the government’s Blue Campaign and steps you can take to raise awareness and combat this terrible crime. Read More

 
IMLS and Department of Education’s OCTAE Present Digital Strategy Webinar for Librarians

December 9, 2014 09:08 AM
The December 18 webinar will cover national initiatives, resources, and tools that public and school librarians can use to enhance their digital literacy programming and services. Read More

 
Heather Stephenson and Jeanne White
Blog Post: StoryCorps Interview: Children's Museum of Indianapolis

February 6, 2015 11:01 AM
Ryan White was one of the first children to be diagnosed with AIDS in 1984, which he contracted from a medicine used to treat his hemophilia. At the Children's Museum of Indianapolis, a permanent exhibit—Ryan’s childhood room—educates visitors about Ryan’s life and AIDS. We hear from Ryan’s mom and close friend in this StoryCorps interview. Read More

 
Susan Hildreth
Blog Post: A Message of Farewell

January 15, 2015 03:53 PM
During my four years leading IMLS, we helped shaped a future course for the nation’s libraries and museums through our investments, partnerships, and leadership initiatives. Read More

 
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Blog Post: A Demand-side Open Government Planning Model for Public Libraries

January 9, 2015 08:37 AM
A new report released by the Center for Technology in Government, University at Albany, explores the role that public libraries play in supporting open government. 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

 
ProfilePromoDec14
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

 
ProfilePromoNov2014
Oklahoma Libraries as a Gateway to Citizenship


The Oklahoma Department of Libraries collaborated with library and community-based programs to support English language learning, civic engagement, and preparation for citizenship. Read More

 
Medals2014Brochure
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