Youth Services

Grant Opportunities

The MBLC uses federal LSTA funding to provide grants for libraries to create innovative, educational services for children and teens.

  • Anytime STEM Learning 
  • Mind in the Making 
  • Science is Everywhere 
  • Serving Tweens and Teens 
  • Strength in Families

Touchpoints in Libraries

MBLC and MLS are partnering with the Brazelton Touchpoints Center to offer the Touchpoints in Libraries training, the aim of which is to support more effective family and caregiver engagement in libraries. Brazelton Touchpoints is part of Boston Children’s Hospital.

Touchpoints in Libraries introduces participants to the Touchpoints approach and explores how it can enhance and expand the important work they already do with families and caregivers. The Touchpoints in Libraries professional development training supports library staff to:

  • view children’s development as a process characterized by ups and downs
  • identify opportunities to connect with and support families through routine library interactions, programs, and services
  • use intentional strategies to connect with and support families and other caregivers
  • create a shared language and understanding of child development, a strengths-based approach to engaging families, and a community of practice and professional support for library staff

Learn more about Touchpoints in Libraries from this informational webinar.

We have the opportunity for four Massachusetts public libraries to apply for a training starting on October 19, 2021. The training will consist of:

1. Eight weeks with one 1.5-hour live virtual session and approximately 1 hour of pre-work each week - total of about 2.5 hours of work each week for 8 weeks. The live virtual sessions will take place on Tuesdays from 2:00-3:30pm on the following dates in 2021: 

  • October 19
  • October 26
  • November 2
  • November 9
  • November 16
  • November 23
  • November 30
  • December 7

2. Six months of reflective practice with one 1-hour live virtual session each month. This portion of the training will take place on Tuesdays from 2:00-3:00pm on the following dates in 2022:

  • January 11
  • February 8
  • March 8
  • April 12
  • May 10
  • June 14
Participants must be able to attend all 8 live virtual sessions during training, and then at least 4 out of 6 live virtual sessions in reflective practice.

Each library should create a team of 3 staff members. Teams must include the following make up:

  • One individual from youth services
  • One individual not from youth services
  • One individual from administration (director or assistant director)

Teams that do not meet this make up will not be considered for the training. All team members must be able to commit to attending all 8 live virtual sessions, completing related coursework, and attend at least 4 of the 6 reflective practice sessions.

Interested libraries must apply by August 31. Applicants will be notified about their acceptance into the cohort before the end of September.

Support & Resources from the Massachusetts Library System (MLS)

MLS has a series of resource guides designed to help youth services and school librarians work together and share tools, tips, and information.

MLS Youth Services Resource Guides

April Mazza
Massachusetts Library System
866-627-7228, x307

Christi Farrar
Massachusetts Library System
866-627-7228, x323

For More Information

Shelley Quezada, Consultant to the Unserved
617-725-1860 x235
(in Massachusetts) 800-952-7403 x235