Libraries Connected launch its new awards to recognise all the amazing achievements of library staff over the past year.
During lockdown libraries and their staff kept communities connected and supported the most vulnerable. They also demonstrated their skills, empathy and flexibility during the crisis to respond to the rapidly evolving situation and this is the perfect opportunity to reward their efforts.
The awards are linked to the Universal Library Offers and Promises and the judging panel will include those leading these areas of work nationally. The awards are open to individuals or teams and will be made in the following six categories:
- Culture and Creativity
- Health and Wellbeing
- Information and Digital
- Children Promise
- Visual and Print Impaired People’s Promise.
Libraries Connected is also delighted to announce that this year’s awards will be generously sponsored by OverDrive, the leading digital reading platform for libraries and schools worldwide, and creator of the award-winning library reading app, Libby. OverDrive is a regular sponsor of the Libraries Connected annual seminar and have worked closely with Libraries Connected to support libraries during the pandemic.
Isobel Hunter, Chief Executive, Libraries Connected:
‘The past year has seen library staff across the country going beyond expectations to provide essential services and continue to develop their offer to engage with their communities. These new awards are a wonderful way to celebrate all that they’ve achieved during the pandemic and so I’m delighted to welcome OverDrive as a partner on our debut awards and thank them for their continued support.’
Nick Forster, Regional Manager, OverDrive:
‘Library services and their staff have risen to the extraordinary challenges of the last eighteen months in so many extraordinary ways and we’re very pleased to be able to take this opportunity to support the Libraries Connected awards in acknowledging just some of the fantastic things that have been achieved.’
Sue Williamson, Director Libraries, Arts Council England:
‘As the National Development Agency for public libraries, Arts Council England is delighted to see the work and skills of library staff recognised through Libraries Connected’s new award system sponsored by Overdrive. We recognise that culture is rooted in our communities and public libraries are a cultural organisation at the heart of those communities. By supporting the Universal Offers through our National Lottery Project Grants programme, we aim to help library staff develop their professional practice and I look forward to seeing the nominations for these awards.’
Nominations for the awards close on Friday 30 July. The award winners will be announced at the Libraries Connected annual seminar on 19 October at a special awards dinner.
Notes to editors
- OverDrive strives to create ‘a world enlightened by reading’. Serving a growing network of 73,000 libraries and schools in 88 countries, OverDrive delivers the industry’s largest digital catalogue of ebooks, audiobooks, magazines and other content through award-winning apps. The Libby reading app for libraries is an Apple and Google Play Editors’ Choice, while the student reading app Sora is one of TIME’s Best Inventions of 2019. Founded in 1986, OverDrive is based in Cleveland, Ohio USA and was named a Certified B Corp in 2017. www.overdrive.com
- Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision. www.artscouncil.org.uk
Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of the bodies administering the Government’s unprecedented £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Funds. Find out more at www.artscouncil.org.uk/covid19