What's New at PA Forward®

North Wales Area Public Library Awarded 2023 Best PA Forward(R) Adult Literacy Program

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2023 PA Forward® Adult Programming Awards Announced

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Unite Against Book Bans

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Pennsylvania Library Association Celebrates National Library Week by Honoring PA Forward® Star Libraries

Annual observance reminds everyone what libraries provide communities; Star Library Awards announced, recognizing achievements earned Dec. 16, 2018 through March 31, 2019

Mechanicsburg, PA (April 8, 2019) – The Pennsylvania Library Association just announced the 2019 first quarter PA Forward™ Star Library awardees. More than 40 libraries from throughout the state earned their star status and are being recognized by the Association for their efforts to provide patrons with literacy-aligned programs and resources.  

“We continue to be in awe of the work of our libraries and all they are doing to help residents,” said Christi Buker, Pennsylvania Library Association Executive Director. “The PA Forward™ Star Library acknowledgement shows these libraries have made intentional investments in literacy programming. Whether they have connected individuals with resources about caring for loved ones, or helped people understand the importance of the census, they are providing more than books to check-out. They are educating and investing in the people they connect with. These individuals then turn around and make direct investments in their overall communities. Libraries should be highlighted for those efforts, not just during National Library Week and not just through our PA Forward™ Star Library awards, but by everyone every day. Because they are changing lives, every day.”  

National Library Week is observed April 7-13, 2019. This annual celebration, sponsored by the American Library Association, honors the continuous contributions of libraries and library workers around the country and is a reminder to encourage library use and support. This year’s theme is Libraries = Strong Communities. First sponsored in 1958, the weeklong observation underscores the importance of libraries as community centers. For the last few years, the Pennsylvania Library Association has worked with their members and their partnering organizations to have counties officially proclaim National Library Week.

PA Forward™, which launched statewide in 2012, works through five key literacies – Basic, Information, Civic & Social, Health and Financial – to assist individuals in enhancing their overall quality of life. To continue helping libraries use PA Forward™ to demonstrate all their libraries offer, in January 2017, the Association kicked off the Star Library program statewide. The Star Library recognition offers support to libraries who participate and integrate PA Forward™’s literacies in their programming activities. Those libraries are recognized for meeting benchmarks within the bronze, silver and gold star levels of the program. While one star is awarded for both the bronze and gold levels, a total of five stars are awarded in the silver category – one silver star for each of the five literacies of PA Forward™. For each silver star award, a number appears denoting the number of silver stars obtained to date. As of 2020, any libraries that have achieved the PA Forward™ Gold Star will have an opportunity to renew that star annually.

Stars are awarded on a quarterly basis in the calendar year and the recognition is for the highest level attained in the program at the time of the award. The libraries noted below are those that earned a first-time star or a new star level between December 16, 2018 and March 31, 2019. For a full listing of PA Forward™ Star Libraries, visit http://paforwardstarlibraries.org/star-status/.

The list of awardees, by county, follows:

Allegheny County

Community Library of Castle Shannon – Gold       Dormont Public Library – Bronze

Oakmont Carnegie Library – Silver, 2                       Pleasant Hills Public Library – Bronze

Sewickley Public Library – Gold                                  South Park Township Library – Silver, 3

Wilkinsburg Public Library – Silver, 2

Armstrong County

Apollo Memorial Library – Silver, 5                           Ford City Public Library – Silver, 2

Kittanning Public Library – Bronze

Beaver County

Monaca Public Library – Silver, 5

Berks County

Boone Area Library – Bronze                                       Brandywine Community Library – Bronze

Exeter Community Library – Bronze                         Oley Valley Community Library – Silver, 4

Wernersville Public Library – Bronze                        Womelsdorf Community – Silver, 2

Blair County

Martinsburg Community Library – Silver, 1

Butler County

Butler Area Public Library – Silver, 4

Chester County

Paoli Library – Silver, 4                                                   Tredyffrin Public Library – Silver, 1

Clarion County

Clarion University of PA Library – Bronze                Knox Public Library – Silver, 5

Crawford County

Cambridge Springs Public Library – Bronze

Cumberland County

Shippensburg University Library – Silver, 3

Dauphin County

Hershey High School Library – Bronze                      Penn State Harrisburg Library – Silver, 5

Delaware County

Haverford Township Free Library – Bronze

Erie County

Erie County Public Library – Silver, 3

Fayette County

Carnegie Free Library of Connellsville – Gold

Fulton County

Fulton County Library – Gold

Jefferson County

Punxsutawney Memorial Library – Silver, 1

Lackawanna County

Dalton Community Library – Gold

Lebanon County

Annville Free Library – Silver, 1                                                   Richland Community Library – Bronze

Lehigh County

Emmaus Public Library – Gold                                                     Lower Macungie Library – Gold

Montgomery County

Horsham Township Library – Silver, 1                                      Perkiomen Valley Library – Silver, 5

Montgomery County – Norristown Public Library – Gold

Northampton County

Memorial Library of Nazareth & Vicinity – Bronze

Washington County

Chartiers-Houston Community Library – Silver, 2

York County

Red Land Community Library – Silver, 4

For more information, visit www.paforwardstarlibraries.org. For more information about National Library Week, visit http://www.ala.org/conferencesevents/celebrationweeks/natlibraryweek.  

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PA Forward® is sponsored, in part, by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services as administered by the Pennsylvania Department of Education through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Tom Wolf, Governor.