The New Jersey State Library, in partnership with LibraryLinkNJ, is pleased offer the second of two webinars for public and school youth services librarians focusing on autism.
As libraries strive for universal inclusive service and ways to make the library instrumental in allowing all people to be part of their community rather than just in it, how can public libraries best serve the needs of individuals with ASD and their families?
This webinar will build on the award winning Libraries and Autism: We're Connected (www.thejointlibrary.org/autism) that began three years ago as a part of Infolink's Welcoming Spaces initiative. Since then we have brought on-site training workshops to hundreds of librarians, expanding on our customer service video to address the real world implementation of best practices and universal service for people with ASD and their families.
Every library we visit tells us the same story of increasing numbers of families dealing with ASD who are turning to their public library for resources, programs and a community center where they are welcome. We will focus our talk around customer service, importance of empowering staff to be willing to ‘do something’, using individuals on the spectrum and with other developmental disabilities as staff and volunteers in the library, programming strategies that work, the importance of connecting with local experts. Please join us to hear more.
After attending this webinar, participants will:
Be provided with customer service tips.
Learn about the importance of empowering staff.
Offer suggestions on how individuals on the ASD spectrum and with other developmental disabilities can be used as a vital part of the library’s staff and as volunteers in the library.
Be provided with programming strategies that work.
Learn the importance of connecting with local experts and the resources they can provide.
Presented by Meg Kolaya, Director of the Scotch Plains Public Library and Dan Weiss, Director of the Fanwood Memorial Library. Meg and Dan have had great success with the collaborative shared-services approach they have championed since 2005. This project was recognized with the ALA NOD award in 2009. This award is presented annually to a library organization chosen for its exemplary service to people with disabilities. The Award Committee noted that, "we were deeply impressed by your project and congratulate you on the production of this valuable resource. Your initiative provides a project model from conception to completion encompassing: State Library vision and funding; able project leadership; the expertise of the filmmakers; close involvement of autism professionals and families; and aggressive, skillful promotion."