PROVIDENCE – Providence Public Library, in partnership with Cranston Public Library and other statewide partners, has received a $498,172 Institute of Museum and Library Service National Leadership Grant to help boost lifelong learning opportunities and increase access to digital literacy programs in Rhode Island.
Other partners include the Rhode Island Adult Education Professional Development Center (at Westbay Collaborative), Rhode Island Family Literacy Initiative, R.I. Office of Library and Information Services, and TechACCESS of Rhode Island.
The institute is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. Its mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. U.S. Senator Jack Reed, D-R.I., authored and successfully passed the bipartisan Museum and Library Services Act of 2010, which annually provides needed federal assistance to museums and libraries across the country.
To address the needs of the underserved population of Providence, the Providence library will use its grant to create Adult Lifelong Learning Access to demonstrate the potential for integrating library, digital literacy, technology access, adult education, and workforce services through the library. Ongoing analysis, communication, and evaluation are key elements of the program. ALLACCESS will track education and workforce outcomes for more than 1,000 patrons who participate.
The partners will provide a matching amount of $781,834 for the project.
“With our mission to inspire lifelong education among all Rhode Islanders, Providence Public Library has a long tradition of developing and implementing innovative, partner-driven adult literacy initiatives such as the ALLACCESS effort, made possible with this IMLS funding,” said Providence Public Library Director Dale Thompson. “We are pleased and expect, along with our many high-performing partners who share our vision for helping Rhode Island adults achieve their education goals, that the expanded resources that this grant enables will substantially increase our ability to serve adults with low education attainment, low English-literacy, disabilities, and/or low digital literacy.”