Giving Tuesday helps non-profits around the globe by bringing awareness to the importance of giving back and donating to a cause. This year will be YALSA’s third year in participating, and the Financial Advancement Committee’s (FAC) goal is to raise at least $4000 to send four...yes FOUR...YALSA members to National Library Legislative Day in Spring 2015. Financial Advancement chair Jack Martin (JM) and veteran member Melissa McBride (MM) interviewed each other below about the importance of giving to YALSA and having a strong presence at Library Legislative Day.  You can help us NOW by signing on to a Thunderclap that will be released on Giving Tuesday as a means of spreading the word about our fundraising goal.

JM: Melissa, this is FAC’s third year participating in Giving Tuesday, right? What the response been like in the past?

MM: Yes, although this is only my second year participating. The response last year was wonderful, as a committee member it was so great seeing all the support for both the Thunderclap and the donations that came in on Giving Tuesday. We far exceeded our expectations and were able to send additional members to Legislative Day.

JM: I love hearing about this great response. I think our members truly understand the importance of Library Legislative Day, and they know how much of an impact it makes to have YALSA members there to rep our awesome association!

MM: As a Past President of YALSA, what does it mean for you to see such support from the members of YALSA?

JM: For me, it’s all about advocacy. I think it’s easy for us to see our members being activists by physically representing YALSA at Library Legislative Day. What I think is harder to sometimes see but even more important are those activists who are giving to YALSA--via Giving Tuesday or any other time. In fact, I see them as some of YALSA’s most important activists because they’re helping association fulfill its mission to fight for teen services in libraries all across the country. I love thinking about all of that youth-focused goodwill, and as a Past President it motivates me to do the same both locally and nationally. Plus, I think it’s important that because of all of these activists who give to us, YALSA is able to award over $150,000.00 of scholarships and awards to members. That’s big stuff!

Speaking of advocacy, we know that YALSA members often place Advocacy and Activism at the top of their list when it comes to getting support from YALSA. Can you elaborate how Giving Tuesday supports this goal in YALSA’s Strategic Plan?

MM: Giving Tuesday enables librarians and library workers to have a voice. Sending librarians and library workers to Legislative Day, who care about the same issues as other YA librarians is powerful. It sends a strong message not only to our legislators, but also to every library worker who struggles to get what they need for their patrons. There are some days when it is just nice to know that YALSA is there supporting library staff and helping us to have a voice. The resources YALSA provides are a huge help in advocating for what we do.

JM: I know a lot of YALSA members might have questions about how much they should give for Giving Tuesday. What have people given in the past?

MM: Anything! If every YALSA member just gave $1 we would far exceed our goal of $4000 (which would send 4 members to Library Legislative Day)! It’s important for people to understand that even the smallest amount is a huge help. If you are in a position to be able to donate more, then great! Give up your Starbucks for the day and help get our voices heard! I actually just finished teaching my 2nd graders about Sarah Hale and her letter writing campaign (that spanned 38 years) just to get Thanksgiving turned into a national holiday. She knew that every letter counted, just as every penny donated counts.

JM: Wow. I hadn’t thought about it in that way. Let me reiterate: if every member only gave $1, we’d reach our goal! Maybe even surpass it! But also, I know many members may be wondering how they can give. YALSA has made it really easy to give, right?

MM: YALSA has made it so easy this year!  Not only can you log onto the ala.org and donate the traditional way, but now you can text to donate! All you have to do is text ALA TEENALA to this number: 41518 to make a $10 donation to YALSA. It couldn’t be easier!
JM: This has been a great conversation, Melissa! I hope everyone out there enjoyed learning about this super important initiative, and we’ll hopefully see everyone out there on social media to support YALSA’s Giving Tuesday campaign on Tuesday, December 2, 2014.

Hello everyone! Wowsers was the Board busy at Annual conference in Chicago last month! We had some pretty substantial convos and created several new task forces, resources and committees that will provide more ways for you all to get involved. Here's a quick recap of some highlights of what happened over the three days that we met. For more details on these items, see the official Board documents. The official minutes will also be posted in the Governance section of the website in the near future.

  • For its “mega issue” the board discussed how to better identify and promote best practices in teen services and continued the discussion at the Membership Meeting.

  • The board directed the Executive Director to work with staff to pilot a new overall schedule for celebrating YALSA's book awards at conferences. ' Staff will get input from the award sponsors and publishers and then determine a new schedule to try for 2014.

  • The Board considered and tabled a request for Board action to make a change to the Morris Committee's charge. ' It will be revisited once the pilot schedule has been determined.

  • The Board agreed to adopt the recommendations around Board transparency presented in a proposal from Board Fellow Carrie Kausch

  • Meeting with ALA Executive Committee representative Rob Banks and ALA Budget Analysis and Review Committee representative Clara Bohrer, the Board shared comments about ALA and YALSA continuing education efforts, the fiscal health of the organization and more.

    Read More →

What's happening in the world of YALSA Governance this week in Chicago? Lots of stuff! The Board will be meeting on Saturday, Sunday and Monday--and please count this as an open invitation to join us at our meetings--any registered conference attendee is welcome. ' At the start of each meeting there's an open forum where you'll have an opportunity to share your ideas, thoughts and opinions on issues that are important to you. Or, you can just stay for the meeting and listen in on the board discussions. You can also follow us on Twitter at @yalsa where the ingeniously talented Carrie Kausch (@dogearedcarrie) will be tweeting highlights from our decisions, discussions and more!

You can find all of our agenda items here--and, as you can see, there are a lot of topics centered around advancing YALSA's strategic plan. Here are some highlights:

First, back at the Summit on Teens and Libraries in January in Seattle, George Needham eloquently pointed out that libraries need to stop being “grocery stores” (in so many words) and instead become “kitchens.” One way many libraries have responded to this phenomenon is by creating maker spaces in libraries. Read More →

What's been going on in my YALSA-land last month? Find out here!

May YALSA President's Report

Key Activities:

Co-hosted an exciting series of online discussions with the Digital Media and Learning team on http://connectedlearning.tv. These talks were inspired by talks at the National Forum on Youth and Libraries. You can watch the discussions here and read through the resource packets here.

Traveled to Washington DC to participate in Library Legislative Day where we met with key policy makers and funders including IMLS (who funded our National Forum project) and government officials to talk about issues surrounding young adults and libraries.

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It's been another busy month in YALSA land. Here's what's been going on!

Key Activities:

Collaborated with the Digital Media and Learning team to build out a month-long series about Teens and the Future of Libraries for connectedlearning.tv. Each episode is hosted every Tuesday in May with a different topic. The full schedule is:

May 2: Kick-off: Teens and the Future of Libraries

May 7: The Importance of Youth Access to Technology in Libraries

May 14: Effectively Leveraging Social Media in Library Programs

May 21: Getting Library & IT Administrators On-Board with Leveraging Social Media

May 28: Teens and the Future of Libraries: Sharing Best Practices Read More →

YALSA and Connected Learning TV go live next month! Next week, even!

Please join moi, YALSA President, and Crystle Martin, Postdoctoral Researcher for the Connected Learning Research Network, next month for a series of free virtual chats which will explore the roles social media and teens play in the future of public and school libraries. We'll be facilitating discussions with Renee Hobbs, Mimi Ito, Craig Watkins, Chris Shoemaker, Wendy Stephens, Joyce Valenza and many more about the challenges surrounding leveraging social media in library programs. YALSA members are invited to participate and to share what has or has not been working in their own libraries. You all will be hearing about best practices from around the globe you can ' implement in your library.

Participants can watch in real time, connect via Chat with others, and ask questions on Livestream join the Connected Learning Community Google+ Page, and contribute to the #futureoflibraries conversation on Twitter. Be sure to check the YALSAblog the month of May, where discussions will continue there as well.

You can find out more here, including a nifty intro video!

Each virtual chat will begin at 1pm, eastern, and you can find out more on each individual series by clicking on the titles below. ' Please check the pages below regularly for updates as we add more speakers.

'· ' ' ' ' ' ' '  May 2: Kick-off: Teens and the Future of Libraries

'· ' ' ' ' ' ' '  May 7: The Importance of Youth Access to Technology in Libraries

'· ' ' ' ' ' ' '  May 14: Effectively Leveraging Social Media in Library Programs

'· ' ' ' ' ' ' '  May 21: Getting Library & IT Administrators On-Board with Leveraging Social Media

'· ' ' ' ' ' ' '  May 28: Teens and the Future of Libraries: Sharing Best Practices

After the last session, connectedlearning.tv and YALSA will put together a free summary report with tools and resources for librarians and library workers to use in their library.

Tune in all month! I can promise plenty of awesomeness!

What's been happening at YALSA? Tons of cool stuff! From the Common Core to Connected Learning to Taskforces, Teen Tech Week and more! It's all here...

Key Activities:

Collaborated with ALSC and AASL to create and appoint the inter-divisional Common Core Task Force, a team tasked with developing materials to educate members of all three divisions on the Common Core.

Chaired the March YALSA Board meeting via conference call. Draft minutes from the call are online at http://ow.ly/jHX4c

Attended the Digital Media & Learning Conference and met with the Connected Learning team to plan YALSA's partnership with Connected Learning TV in May. ' More information is online at www.ala.org/yalsa/issues-current-projects

Convened a key discussion with YALSA members serving on various research-focused committees around the future of YALSA's research agenda.

Represented YALSA at the Children's Book Council Meeting on March 22 to share YALSA's new resources and initiatives.

Appointed several new taskforces, including the Teen Tech Week and Teen Read Week Evaluation taskforces, the Programming Guidelines taskforce and more.

Outreach & Media:

Interviewed by New Jersey Public Radio on Teen Tech Week.
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What in the world have I been up to lately? It's all here.

Key Activities:

Worked with the Board to appoint the fabulous Carla Land as the 2013-14 YALSA Board Fellow. We are thrilled to have her as part of the team!

Worked with the Board to appoint Pam Spencer Holley to fill the vacant position of Fiscal Officer. Pam will be working closely with the Board, the Executive Committee and the FInancial Advancement Committee Chair to help YALSA members and the public better understand YALSA's finances. Thank you, Pam!

Had an inspiring, eye-opening, amazing time at the Summit on Teens & Libraries. We learned about teens, technology, Connected Learning and so much more. Save the date for March 19 so you can participate in the first virtual town hall on leveraging partnerships between libraries and other organizations: www.ala.org/yaforum & on Twitter: #yalsaforum.
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Wanna get involved in YALSA right now? YALSA needs your help! We're looking for expert programmers, Teen Read Week gurus, Teen Tech Week geniuses, Road Trip afficionados, Common Core Standards experts and more!

Based on Board decisions at the 2013 Midwinter Conference, I'll be making appointments to the following Super! Awesome! Taskforces! All you have to do is complete the volunteer form.
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