St. Paris Public Library receives national grant for small and rural libraries


ST. PARIS – The St. Paris Public Library has been selected as one of 240 libraries to participate in 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 $10,000 grant that will help the library provide an enhanced entrance to the building by improving their accessibility ramp.

“We are so proud to be chosen for this amazing opportunity,” said Library Director Nicole Baker. “This grant will allow our library to provide safer accessibility to our residents with disabilities or ambulatory difficulties. It will help us improve our services to ensure this population feels welcome and comfortable in our space.”

As part of the grant, St. Paris Public Library staff will take an online course in how to lead conversations, a skill vital to library work today. Staff will have conversations with organizations which provide services to Champaign County residents with disabilities and library patrons who utilize the ramp to ensure the improvements will meet the needs of everyone.

“We want everyone to feel encouraged to utilize our library. Making the journey into the building easier is the first step in allowing every person the opportunity to participate in all we have to offer,” says Baker.

For questions, please contact Nicole Baker at 937-663-4349 or [email protected].

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).”

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