Library Awarded $20,000 Grant for Small and Rural Libraries

Brimfield Public Library District has been selected as one of 310 libraries to participate in round two of Libraries Transforming Communities: Accessible Small and Rural Communities, an American Library Association (ALA) initiative that provides community engagement and accessibility resources to small and rural libraries to help them better serve people with disabilities. The competitive award comes with a $20,000 grant that will help the library better meet the needs of area children and teens with disabilities.

We are thrilled to have been chosen for this grant,” said Library Director, Katie Hahn.We are looking forward to working with families and community partners to make meaningful updates to our youth spaces, collections, resources, and programs, so that young people with disabilities and their caregivers feel welcome and supported in our library.”

As part of the grant, the library will host several opportunities for young people and their caregivers to share ways grant funds could be used to make the library more accessible and inclusive. The library hopes to replace some of its traditional furniture with sensory-friendly options and expand non-traditional collections like youth audiobooks and large print.

“We know the number of students being identified with sensory processing disorder and learning disabilities has increased over the last few years and want to be part of the support system that empowers those students to learn and grow both in and outside of school,” said Hahn.

If you are interested in getting involved or taking part in the conversations, please contact Katie Hahn:, 309-446-9575.

Since 2014, ALA’s Libraries Transforming Communities initiative has re-imagined the role libraries play in supporting communities. Libraries of all types have utilized free dialogue and deliberation training and resources to lead community and campus forums; take part in anti-violence activities; provide a space for residents to come together and discuss challenging topics; and have productive conversations with civic leaders, library trustees and staff.

“Libraries Transforming Communities: Accessible Small and Rural Communities is an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) in collaboration with the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL).”