Senator John Flanagan (2nd Senate District) announced that the Middle Country Public Library has been granted over $70,000 in state funding to expand their Family Place Libraries program. This expansion will bring this valuable program to four new libraries, including both the Elmont Public Library and the Deer Park Public Library.
Family Place Libraries is an initiative of the Middle Country Public Library and Libraries for the Future to bring literacy and a love of reading to families across the state and the nation. According to their web site, Family Place Libraries redesign the library environment to be welcoming and appropriate for children beginning at birth; connect parents with the resources, programs and services offered at the library and other family service agencies; and reach out to nontraditional library users.
The program creates a network families need to nurture their children's development during the critical first years of life and helps ensure all children enter school ready and able to learn. Components of this program include developmentally appropriate library collections of books, toys and multimedia materials and extensive coalition building with community agencies to provide parents with access to strategies for healthy child development.
The program is a network of libraries nationwide that believe that literacy begins at birth and currently includes more than 220 sites in 23 states, and continues to grow. Long Island currently has 34 Family Place libraries and hopes to grow to 45 in the next 3 years with the help of this NYS grant and other funding sources.
"This grant from New York State provides our Family Place Initiative with a wonderful opportunity to spread a dynamic program that brings libraries into the forefront of emergent literacy and family support," said Middle Country Public Library Director Sandra Feinberg. "Working in concert with local child development, parenting and family service providers, librarians help parents to create the best environment to help their young children become readers and learners."
"The Middle Country Public Library continues to set the standard in library services and this program is a great example of their vision. This will help families develop a love of reading in their children and prepare them as they enter school. This state funding will greatly assist in these impressive efforts and that is a great benefit to everyone," stated Senator Flanagan.
To learn more about Family Place Libraries including information about the libraries currently take part in the program, residents can click here or visit the Middle Country Public Library.
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