During the SRC training a few weeks ago, a number of you expressed enthusiasm about implementing some sort of service based project for the children at your libraries to participate in. Many of you have probably already gone online to check out the wonderful programs that Rebekah shared from Heifer International and Pennies for Peace (check them out here if you haven't yet!). However, after marinating on your feedback of the day's events, I couldn't help but be inspired by your enthusiasm for encouraging children to reach out to disadvantaged communities elsewhere. To be completely honest, it is impossible to disassociate libraries from notions of global solidarity. Books often serve as one of the first ways that we explore the vast world that surrounding us, and library cards are our passports.
Anyway, with all of this in mind, I wanted to provide you all with some additional resources that might help in developing a program that works well for your library. I stumbled upon this intriguing site for The FreeChild Project this week, and thought that it provided some really interesting information. The organization promotes new roles for children in society by providing resources and inspiration for aspiring young activists, artists, journalists, etc.. The FreeChild Project's vision is of a society where every young person is engaged in powerful, purposeful, and positive social change
The site is AMAZING! It provides tons of great information on a wide array of social issues, it provides links to organizations that are working promote various initiatives, it provides resources to help children become advocates for a cause of their choosing, it has book reviews, local publications, and much much more! One of the other really great things about this site is that it provides a theoretical justification for their approach and encourages a high level of interaction amongst their user community.
If you are still looking for inspiration for your summer programing...consider checking out The FreeChild Project. You are sure to find some very interesting ideas.