The purpose of this project is to eliminate barriers that prevent people from accessing vital community resources, particularly in the areas of housing, health, nutrition, employment, and education through establishing community resource navigators in up to ten California Public Libraries.
This program will help California public libraries build staff skills and knowledge about social care resources, as well as create or join a hub of local social service organizations. Collaborations with existing service providers will be an essential element of each successful project. By expanding their capacity to provide effective social service assistance, successful awardees will build resilience and improve the health and wellbeing of their communities. All participating libraries will:
· Receive funds of up to $60,000;
· Partner with at least two California-based organizations providing social services;
· Receive training from the California State Library;
· Engage with a cohort of library staff focused on developing skills, tools, and knowledge to best implement the project. The cohort will convene monthly to create a community of practice.
All awardees will be required to:
· Participate in monthly virtual meetings;
· Partner with at least two California-based (Regional?) social service organizations;
· Create a needs assessment (training will be provided);
· Establish a location in the library that can be used for appointments, with a computer, printer, and phone.
To conduct an effective project, each library will engage in a needs assessment during the grant period. Shared conversations will be built into the Community Connections project so that all libraries participating in the project will have the opportunity to share ideas, concerns, and solutions to challenges that occur during the course of the project. Training on partnerships, needs assessments, asset mapping, and more will be offered by the California State Library.
Libraries interested in being part of the Community Connections project will need to identify staff to focus on this project (either a current staff member or new hire) to serve as a Community Resource Specialist (CRS). The CRS will provide social service information and referrals for patrons to other organizations. The CRS will also develop or participate in a hub of organizations providing these resources. Grants will be awarded in October 2021. Projects will close on June 30, 2022.
Funding can be used to offset staff costs, as this project will be time-consuming and will work best if there is a single person identified to receive training, serve as the point person for partnerships, and staff a community resource desk.
- Public Agency
This opportunity is available to all California public libraries that meet the criteria found at this link https://www.library.ca.gov/Content/pdf/grants/lsta/LSTAEligibility.pdf
This grant opportunity is available to public libraries in California.
Matching Funding Requirement:
Applicants are expected to contribute a local match to the grant funds in the form of a cash match and/or in-kind contributions. A match is expected, but no minimum amount is required.
How to Apply
State agencies/departments recommend you read the full grant guidelines before applying.
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