Kitsap Regional Library is an honoree in the 2014 LibraryAware Community Award, presented by Library Journal and sponsored by EBSCO Information Services. The recognition includes a $5,000 prize.
“We are very happy to receive this recognition,” said Library Director Jill Jean. “We are even more excited about what is to come. Already as we have begun our strategic planning process for the next five years, we have identified some new and additional ways that the library can help support and connect our community.”
The Library Journal stated that KRL is “passionately, actively embedded in everything Kitsap County,” with more than 200 partnerships. It also added the following:
Community engagement is a "core pillar" of the library's strategic plan that runs through 2015. The library commissioned a study by OrangeBoy Consulting to gather concrete data on users, the resources they most value, and preferred communication methods. KRL also sought feedback from community members, patrons, staff and nonusers as well.
Among KRL's initiatives is BiblioTEC, which focuses on getting homeless and at-risk youth access to cutting-edge technology training, equipment and mentorship. The Coffee Oasis and KRL partner together along with The Agency, a staff-led advocacy team "that uses guerrilla marketing tactics to spark interest in the library."
The library system has also collaborated with digital vendor OverDrive for developing and launching the first kids eReading Room. There will also be a study of staff to address needs, which WebJunction will use to develop "comprehensive training" for public libraries.
The press release stated that the Library Journal added,"If financial support is one metric of community engagement, Kitsap must be doing something right: two of its buildings are owned and supported completely by community non-profit groups, and a recently awarded million-dollar grant from the Kitsap Community Foundation will help support a new library in Kingston."
Because of KRL's ability to focus on community engagement as an "integral part" of the planning and assessment process, KRL was awarded third place for the 2014 LibraryAware Community Award.