When Erica Freudenberger, director of the Red Hook (N.Y.) Public Library, set out to make change in her community, she knew she couldnâ€™t do it aloneâ€"she would need the [...]
When Erica Freudenberger, director of the Red Hook (N.Y.) Public Library, set out to make change in her community, she knew she couldnâ€™t do it aloneâ€"she would need the community itself to help her.
And though her
community is smallâ€"1,900 people inhabit the village of Red Hookâ€"it has proven itself mighty, making changes that community members have wanted to see for many years.
Of course it wasnâ€™t Freudenberger and the community alone who made these changes happen; it was thanks in part to an initiative called Libraries Transforming Communities (LTC), which launched a program in April 2014 involving 10 library districts.
The initiative is the result of a partnership between the American Library Association
and the Bethesda, Marylandâ€"based Harwood Institute for Public Innovation
, and it focuses on how libraries can turn outward to their communities for input and inspiration.
and a mix of four library volunteers, staff, and an internâ€"combined into what is called a â€œcohortâ€â€"first started brainstorming on approaching community members to get insight on how to raise the quality of life, one member suggested going door-to-door.