April 4 – 10 is National Library Week—a time for library lovers across the country to celebrate literacy, intellectual freedom, and equitable access to information.
While the COVID-19 pandemic has limited in-person services and programs, libraries have gotten creative to keep their communities strong while socially distancing, from hosting innovative virtual programs to providing outdoor Wi-Fi access. Libraries are now more essential than ever, and National Library Week is an opportunity to remind the world that this work matters.
There are countless ways to join the celebration, from attending virtual events at your local library to contacting your legislators about library funding. Here are a few of our favorite ways to get involved:
Speak Out for Library Funding
Funding libraries is an investment in our communities: they perform essential social services like promoting literacy, supporting job seekers, and providing access to information for all. National Library Week is a great time to contact your legislators about why library funding is so important—and the American Library Association has made it easy to reach out. Thanks to their online templates, it only takes a few minutes to urge your representatives to advocate for crucial library funding in the upcoming federal budget and to co-sponsor the groundbreaking Build America’s Libraries Act.
Join the Conversation on Social Media
Use the hashtag #NationalLibraryWeek on your favorite social media platforms to be part of the nationwide celebration. People are also using the hashtag #MyLibraryIs to share how their libraries extend way beyond the four walls of their buildings: for you, the library might be the smartphone app you use to check out free ebooks and audiobooks, or a virtual book club hosted by a librarian. Use the hashtag to share what your library means to you! As an added bonus, the American Library Association will select randomly one user to receive a $100 Visa gift card; any post using the hashtag by 12 PM CT on Saturday, April 10 will be eligible to win.
Stop By a Virtual Event
In honor of National Library Week, legendary journalist Dan Rather will join the American Library Association, United for Libraries, and Booklist for a live conversation about library advocacy and his book What Unites Us—tune in on Thursday, April 8 to hear his inspiring words. Your local library may also have virtual programs planned, so check out their website to see what’s happening and join the fun.
Visit Your Library’s Website
One of the easiest ways to support your library is just to visit their website and use their resources! With countless free ebooks, audiobooks, movies, magazines, databases, and more, your library has something entertaining and informative for everyone. Don’t have a library card? Many libraries allow you to register online—visit your local library’s website or contact a librarian to find out more.
Treat Yourself to Library Merch
Show off your library love with these amazing face coverings or a bookish Baby Yoda t-shirt! The best part? Proceeds from these products support the American Library Association’s efforts to promote digital access, combat censorship, and champion much-needed funding for libraries.
Visit the National Library Week website to learn more!