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Page history last edited by Miranda Valdez 7 years, 1 month ago

Kerol Harrod's Asset-based Community Development MOU Page






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 Summer Reading Outreach and Community Connections


Partners: Kati Trice, Market Coordinator, Denton Community Market; Kerol Harrod, Library Assistant, North Branch, Denton Public Library.


• Goals

1. Increase participation in the Denton Public Library’s Summer Reading Club. 

2. To offer free, vibrant, educational children’s activities to all participants of the Denton Community Market, including those underserved by the library.


• Objectives

3. Objectives for Goal #1: (a). The Denton Public Library (DPL) will have a booth for two non-consecutive Saturdays at the Denton Community Market (DCM), and market-goers can sign up for the library’s free Summer Reading Club program. (b). Last year, there were 6,856 participants in the DPL’s Summer Reading Club (DPL 2014). This year, we want to push that number to over 7,000 by signing up at least 150 people over the course of two market appearances.

4. Objectives for Goal #2: (a). The DPL will provide an educational craft for children and one scheduled storytime at each of the two Saturdays in the summer of 2015. (b). Materials for Summer Reading Club signup will be available in both English and Spanish.


• ALSC Competencies: Harrod_MOU_Competencies.docx


• Evidence-based Practice

7. Research article one:

Bogel, Gayle. 2012. “Public Library Summer Reading Programs Contribute to Reading Progress and Proficiency.” Evidence Based Library & Information Practice 7 (1): 102-104. http://ezproxy.twu.edu:2048/login?url=http://ezproxy.twu.edu:2060/login.aspx?direct=true&db=lih&AN=78174923&site=ehost-live&scope=site.


This article explores ways that public libraries can collaborate with organizations that work with at-risk children. Though the focus of this study is a partnership with schools, the findings apply to partnerships at large. The study, carried out through Dominican University and Johns Hopkins University, followed 357 elementary school students, at least 50% of whom were eligible for free or reduced meals at the school. Participants were tested with the Scholastic Reading Inventory before and after participation in a summer reading program. The results of the study showed that participants “did not experience loss in summer reading” (Bogel 2012, 103) due to their engagement in the reading program. The authors also noted “the need to include parents and grandparents in outreach efforts,” which would apply to the DPL and DCM effort. Though there was no control group set up and data was self-reported, the tests results show no loss in reading level during the summer months for those who completed the program. Also, parents reported a strong belief that their children were better prepared for school after the program.

8. Research article two:

McWilliams, M. S., Ashley Brailsford Vaughns, Anne O'Hara, Loretta S. Novotny, and Theodora Jo Kyle. 2014. “Art Play: Stories of Engaging Families, Inspiring Learning, and Exploring Emotions.” YC: Young Children 69 (2): 32-39. 



This article provides details on an art workshop planned and implemented by Nebraska’s Omaha Family Literacy Partnership (OFLP). The weeklong workshop involved over 2,000 participants, and it focused on “playful art explorations as a strategy for developing literacy learning” (McWilliams et al. 2014, 33). Children were given art projects where play was guided for maximum educational impact. The article offers specific art projects and general principles for engaging children with literacy learning through art production. This type of “symbolic play [is] linked to proficiencies in literacy learning” (35). One important factor in the workshop is how to involve whole families in the artistic process, and how this process helps participants better understand emotional language. This type of family-centered activity would be perfect for the DCM outreach.


• Measures for Success

9. Data for Objectives for Goal #1: (a). Part of the basic success of this partnership is participating twice in the market. Only one date has been set so far, and the other date is pending. Making sure the DPL appears at the DCM twice instead of once under the agreed-upon terms is crucial to the success of the program. (b). The DPL will record the number of people signed up for Summer Reading Club at the DCM. This number will be evaluated in comparison to last year’s data to see if there was an increase in the number of Summer Reading Club participants as a result of outreach efforts with the DCM. This overall data will help inform the types of outreach materials and activities to plan in the future. 

10. Data for Objectives for Goal #2: (a). The DPL will ensure the presence of children’s crafts and activities, and the DCM will provide the space to do so at no cost to the DPL. The DPL will record the number of participants in the children’s crafts and activities. The DCM will record total number of visitors to the market for each appearance. (b). The DPL will ensure the presence of Summer Reading Club materials in Spanish and record the number of Spanish flyers taken. This will help with planning next year, both for advertising to underserved populations and for printing needs.


• Benefits

11. Benefits for the non-profit agency: The nonprofit agency will receive children’s programming from trained librarians and library staff. Regular patrons of the DPL will be informed of the DCM storytimes and encouraged to attend. This could result in increased attendance to the DCM. 

12. Benefits for the library: The library will be able to sign up market goers for its Summer Reading Club. Also, the library will be able to reach out beyond its regular patron base, possibly increasing library use by a wider range of the public.

13. Benefits for the community: Promotes awareness of the Summer Reading Program, a type of reading program proven to prevent reading loss in the summer (Bogel 2012). Information will be available in both English and Spanish. Also, these market appearances will provide free outdoor entertainment for all children, regardless of their socioeconomic background. 


• Responsibilities of the Partners

14. Non-profit Agency Responsibilities: The DCM will provide the space for the DPL to have a table for two non-consecutive days at the Denton Community Market in the summer of 2015. The DPL will be allowed to sign up market goers for the Summer Reading Club program.

15. Library Responsibilities: The library will provide children’s crafts and activities for two Saturdays at the DCM. The craft will be focused on early literacy and will include writing, coloring, and gluing letters onto activity sheets. A storytime will also be provided at each market day.

16. Shared Responsibilities: Both the DPL and DCM will advertise the library’s presence at each market appearance.


• Budget

17. Budget Detail: $100 from the DPL’s 2015 Summer Reading Club budget has been set aside for craft supplies for both appearances at the Denton Community Market ($50 per visit). The storytime will take no new expenditures; the arts and crafts will, though, and that is where the money will be spent. The DPL will provide activity pages, crayons, glue sticks, and die-cut cardstock for the craft activity. Staff time will consist of three people from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. going to the market twice (5 hours each time, 3 people each time; total staff time of 30 hours; preparation time is two hours for each market day, so a total of 34 DPL staff hours). In convention with the DPL, staff time is calculated at $21 per hour, considering that some staff will be for professionals, and some will be for paraprofessionals. DCM is waiving the $90 membership fee as well as the $11 day fee. The in-kind contribution of the market is a total of $112. Here is a chart breakdown on the budget:




Denton Public Library—SRC Committee








In-Kind Donations




Ind. Value

Total Value

Denton Public LibrarySRC materials




Denton Community Marketmembership fee




Denton Community Marketdaily fee




Total In-Kind Donations





Expense Breakdown:




Craft supplies




Staff Time: 34 hours x $21.00




Total Expenses





18. Source(s) of Funding: The sources of funding for this project include the DPL’s Summer Reading Club annual budget and the in-kind contributions of both the DCM and the DPL. The DPL also provides staff time. Other sources of funding could include current funders of the Summer Reading Club, including the Friends of the Denton Public Library, Denton Municipal Electric, DATCU, Jostens, Peterbilt, and Sam’s Club (Summer Reading Budget 2015). Past contributors include Tetrapak (DPL 2013) and Denton Rotary Club (DPL 2010). Another grant that could be used for book giveaways is the Reading is Fundamental Grant (RIF 2014). Book giveaways would increase the value of a literacy outreach, and it could provide reading material for underserved families who may have few books of their own at home.


• Time

19. Project Timeline: The project will begin on Saturday, June 6, 2015 when the DPL makes its first appearance at the DCM.  The other date is yet to be determined, but will fall sometime later in June or July of 2015. 

20. Evaluation Points: The project will be evaluated after each market outreach day. The project will then be evaluated as a whole, encompassing both market days. These numbers will be considered in the DPL’s 2015 Summer Reading Club Report and will be shared with the DCM.


• Ending the Partnership

21. Deal breaker(s): There are two deal breakers for the partnership. If the DCM does not provide the table space and day fees, the DPL cannot participate in the market. If the library doesn’t provide some sort of children’s activities, then the deal will also be off.

22. Bless and release (exit strategy): After two outreach days at the DCM, the library and the market have fulfilled their agreements. No further action is required of either. Data will be evaluated, shared, and decisions on any future partnerships related to DPL’s Summer Reading Program and the DCM will be discussed prior to the 2016 market season.


Reflection on Capstone Project, Stage 3

I was expecting Stage 3 of this project to be relatively easy, but that was a gross error in judgment on my part. Working with a detailed budget and considering outside funders was just one factor that made the process more rigorous than I anticipated. Finding research that backed up the outreach program was also more challenging than I thought. That said, I’m glad I now know how this process works start-to-finish. I can see how it will help in the future when applying for grants and approaching potential partners for this kind of collaborative effort.


Considering SLO 1, this Capstone project has put the difference between theory and practice into high relief. Learning techniques for Asset-Based Community Development (Jeng 2014) and finding out how to navigate partnerships (Harrington 2014) in the classroom was one thing. Knowing the different steps necessary to get to this point in a partnership is necessary, but it’s quite another thing to actually do the work and see how long it takes. The process of finding a partner, collecting data, and coming to an understanding of what both parties will contribute is no small undertaking, and this is before anything has even been implemented. I’m surprised how many hours have gone into the creation of this MOU. 


It’s also surprising how far in advance everything must be planned. Though the program outlined in the MOU will not be implemented until the middle of 2015, planning essentially began in October of 2014. Eight months might seem like a long time, but I’ve learned that where budgets and seasonal programming are concerned, it’s never too early to get on the docket. The Denton Community Market is a growing organization with an increasingly visible community profile, so getting in early for the coming season is the only alternative to getting in too late.


Where SLO 2 is concerned, I found that collaborative planning takes trust. Knowing you can rely on your partner to hold up their end of the bargain is the foundation on which the actual program unfolds. On the other hand, knowing the specific and unique ways in which a partnership will fall apart (the “deal breaker”) is also good to have in writing. From my own past challenges with partnerships both library-related and otherwise, I see now that having this spelled out in black-and-white is a good way of knowing when the wheels are coming off the partnership. 


Once a certain level of trust is reached, though, that trust leads to investments of time, talent, and treasure, and collaborative budgeting means taking trust and putting resources behind it. Being able to evaluate the relationship, plan for future partner engagements, and having a working knowledge of in-kind donations and staff-time calculations will help when it comes time to seek partnerships with other organizations.


This process was eye-opening, frustrating, empowering, and ultimately satisfying. There is no such thing as an easy challenge, and the rewards of connecting with the community with the help of a dedicated partner are worth the effort.




ALSC (Association for Library Service to Children). 2009. Competencies for Librarians Serving Children in Public Librarieshttp://www.ala.org/alsc/edcareeers/alsccorecomps (accessed November 26, 2014).


Bogel, Gayle. 2012. “Public Library Summer Reading Programs Contribute to Reading Progress and Proficiency.” Evidence Based Library & Information Practice 7 (1): 102-104. http://ezproxy.twu.edu:2048/login?url=http://ezproxy.twu.edu:2060/login.aspx?direct=true&db=lih&AN=78174923&site=ehost-live&scope=site.


Calgarin. 2014. SHbusinessHandshake. JPG. Morguefile.com.


DPL (Denton Public Library). 2015. “2015 Summer Reading Club Budget.” Internal report.


DPL (Denton Public Library). 2014. “2014 Summer Reading Club Report.” Internal report.


DPL (Denton Public Library). 2013. “2013 Summer Reading Club Report.” Internal report.


DPL (Denton Public Library). 2010. “2010 Summer Reading Club Report.” Internal report.


Harrington, Mary Beth. 2014. “Identifying Community Assets to Build Strategic Partnerships.” (Blackboard Collaborate lecture, Texas Woman’s University, Denton, TX, July 3). 


Jeng, Ling Hwey. 2014. “Asset-Based Community Development (ABCD).” (Blackboard Collaborate lecture, Texas Woman’s University, Denton, TX, October 20).


RIF (Reading is Fundamental). 2014. “About RIF.” http://readingisfundamental.org/us/about-rif.htm (accessed November 26, 2014).


McWilliams, M. S., Ashley Brailsford Vaughns, Anne O'Hara, Loretta S. Novotny, and Theodora Jo Kyle. 2014. “Art Play: Stories of Engaging Families, Inspiring Learning, and Exploring Emotions.” YC: Young Children 69 (2): 32-39. 


NOTE: This MOU was formulated for a TWU course, and it does not represent any binding or nonbinding agreements between the Denton Public Library and the Denton Community Market.


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