WHAT LIBRARIES AND LIBRARIANS CAN DO FOR EUROPE

Spain
Elizabeth Coelho
Community engagement, Education, Youth oriented
Digital, Intangible
2019
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We are a small public library and wanting to let know what happens in different places of Europe. Another of our goals is to be in touch with European libraries and giving visibility to libraries in Europe. In Madrid we have a network of Euro-Libraries, although this is helpful but it is not enough if the librarians don’t get more participation and motivation to work on it. It would be fine to create a network of public libraries around Europe and awards for European librarians for their good job.

We are a public library, with 2,401 members plus visitors from nearby villages. Our working groups are: school children visiting, three book reading clubs and Europe Youth Club.

Recently, our “European Christmas” initiative has been awarded with the EYCH 2018 label and got an impact on the main media of our country:

https://www.elmundo.es/madrid/2019/02/24/5c6ede6ffdddff37318b45c5.html,

  http://www.melodia-fm.com/audios-online/piernas/podcast/entrevista-elisabeth-coelho-bibliotecaria-moraleja-enmedio-que-pasara-historia-humanidad-piernas-son-cuerpo-03032019_2019030301003.html

Due to the lack of awareness of our members and visitors about the customs in Europe and the great success of our first European project now more of them are running in our library. Therefore, with the support of the local government and European Documentation Center of Madrid, we have developed an annual European project, that consists of six parts:

1. Europe’s Day. Program: - Lecture about Europe by the founder of the “European Documentation Center-Madrid”. - Small speeches from neighbors (adults and children) talking about their knowledge and experiences about Europe. - Typical European snacks.

2. European Family Cinema: every Friday in May

3. European Storytellers: for kids by European Documentation Center-Madrid, once a year.

4. Christmas in Europe: in 2018 we chose and celebrated Latvia’s custom “a poem-a gift” with our children.

5. Valentine´s Day in Europe: in 2019 we chose and celebrated Verona’s custom “writing letters to Juliet” creating our own “Moraleja in Love”.

6. European Youth Club: this new project consists of a group of young people and some of them are foreigners or with some disability, who meet once a month in our library. Our goal is to encourage them to participate in projects, events, volunteering, literature, culture etc… in the European Union.

European Dimension

From our small project we want to let know what libraries and librarians can do for Europe. Taking advantage of the public libraries in Europe a network could be created, where libraries and librarians could easily communicate. We try to be in touch with some libraries in Europe to develop our European Library Project, but of course if there was a network of European public libraries and a direct participation of the librarians, this would be much easier.

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