LSTA Grants

2020-2021 Awardees

The 2020-2021 Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants total over $2 million, and include 49 awards for local library projects that advance excellence and promote equity by strengthening capacity, expanding access, and community engagement in North Carolina's libraries. Grants can be viewed by LSTA goals in the tabs below or download a full list here.

Strengthening Capacity

Strengthening Capacity

Projects listed below address Goal 1 of the 2018-2022 LSTA Five Year Plan

Strengthening Capacity: North Carolinians will have libraries with essential resources and capable staff that enable them to provide exceptional library programs and services.

Appalachian Regional Library
A 5-Year ARL Plan                                                                        Award:  $32,385

So that the people who use our libraries have the services, programs, and materials that best meet their needs, Appalachian Regional Library must reassess its communities and create an up-to-date plan based on the most recent information and input available. This assessment and planning process will ensure that community needs are correctly identified and that community input is appropriately integrated into meaningful library goals, objectives, and activities. The plan will be articulated to the staff and community and implemented in 2021-2022. A consultant will be hired to facilitate this process.

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
New Customer Service Model                                                   Award:  $50,000

The Charlotte Mecklenburg Library will work with consultants to develop a new service model that moves staff from a book-centered approach to library services to a customer-centered approach that delivers on the Library’s Essential in 2025 blueprint, its Library as Public Commons platform, and ultimately improves lives and builds a stronger community. The service model design consultant and a working staff team will use a human design approach over 15+ weeks to create, test and refine a new customer service model that will ultimately be implemented across the library system.

Chatham County Public Libraries
CCPL Needs Assessment                                                             Award:  $17,881

The public library system in Chatham County will work with a qualified professional to conduct a needs assessment.  Users consistently rate customer service positively in ongoing county-conducted surveys. The statistics collected by each branch library, however, indicated a disparity in both programming attendance and circulation of materials. By gathering input and analyzing data from multiple sources, the consultant will develop a plan to provide more equitable library services for the community.

Davie County Public Library
DCPL Five-Year Plan                                                                     Award:  $29,494

A five-year plan will be needed to inform the library’s priorities in services and programs into the next decade of the 21st Century. This year-long process will ensure that community input is integrated into meaningful goals and objectives and resources identified. The plan will be articulated to the staff and community and implemented in Fiscal Year of 2021. The Davie County Public Library will be hiring a consultant to facilitate this process.

Farmville Public Library
Growing a Healthy Farmville                                                     Award:  $22,788

In an effort to foster a healthy community, Farmville Public Library will partner with its local health and wellness organizations to offer an enhanced collection of materials, resources and programs that will encourage individuals and families to discover ways to live a healthier lifestyle and put into practice what they’ve learned.  The collection and programs will address barriers to healthy lifestyles that the rural Farmville community faces including obesity, living below the poverty line, and food insecurity by offering a variety of resources and interactive programs led by experts in their fields which will include a StoryWalk literacy and exercise program, a Charlie Cart mobile kitchen and cooking program, a gardening basics program, and a circulating collection of health-related print, electronic and audiovisual materials, and gardening and fitness equipment.  Users will be able to access collections and programs by visiting the library’s physical and virtual space as well as its mobile pop-up library program.

Fontana Regional Library
Mobile Print Access                                                                     Award:  $46,786

Computer access at the library no longer necessarily means using a library computer, as more people bring their own devices to access our wi-fi. But people who bring their devices to the library cannot print from them. Offering mobile will create greater equity of access to resources for our patrons who need print services. Many of our patrons are seniors with a low level of digital experience; they know how to use their own device (often just a phone) but do not have the facility to switch to a public computer in order to print. These patrons face an insurmountable barrier when they can’t access emails or accounts on a library computer.

H.D. Cooley Library
Cooley's STREAM Program                                                         Award:  $15,867

H. D. Cooley Library is seeking to develop a Science, Technology, Reading, Art and Mathematics Program. The program will help children and young adult patrons stay current with these fields of education. The participants will gain hands on, instructional, and visual learning experiences. They will be given a platform to showcase their artwork, and science projects for the community to enjoy; leaving their footprint at Cooley. The program will help children and young adult patrons stay abreast with robotics and computer science. Participants will broaden their math and reading skills, and learn different art styles.

Harnett County Public Library
Harnett Main RFID                                                                      Award:  $74,904

The Harnett County Public Library will improve patron services at its Main Branch in Lillington, NC by converting its entire physical collection to Radio Frequency Identification (RFID). This project includes item tags, conversion station, antennas with readers, self-checkout stations, security gates, and a portable shelf management device. RFID implementation will benefit all of the users in Harnett County’s rapidly growing patron-base by automating the checkout process, which will enable staff to devote more time to programming and patron assistance. RFID-enabled collection management tools will also improve catalog accuracy and ensure that our records are reliable for customers.

High Point Public Library
Lockers for Self-Service                                                               Award:  $22,436

Grant funds will be used for an electronic locker system for holds retrieval at the Deep River Recreation Center to allow customers 24/7 access to materials placed on hold and sent to this location for pick up.  Customers have been able to return materials and pick up holds at this location, located six miles from the library in the fastest-growing area of High Point.  While materials can be returned anytime in the outdoor book drop, in order to accommodate Parks and Recreation staff, holds can only be picked up for 15 hours a week.  The lockers will be located outside the recreation center near the front door, and would provide 24/7 access to holds.

Hocutt-Ellington Memorial Library
Active Reading Experiences                                                       Award:  $5,270

In order to help prepare Clayton‘s growing population of young families to learn active reading skills and to prepare their children ages 0-6 for Kindergarten, the Hocutt-Ellington Memorial Library will provide Active Reading Workshops for parents and children and build and circulate 35 Active Reading Experience Kits that contain books, manipulatives, activities, and multimedia resources centered upon a variety of themes. The Active Reading workshops will be presented by the Partnership for Children of Johnston County. These workshops will teach parents how to actively read with children and how to build literacy and kindergarten readiness skills. The circulating Active Reading Experience Kits will include information and activities presented in the Active Reading Workshops, along with books and ancillary materials, thus allowing all library patrons the opportunity to practice early literacy and pre-kindergarten skills and activities at home.

Lee County Libraries
Inclusive Audio Visual                                                                  Award:  $9,750

The Lee County Library auditorium hosts a variety of events each month for a broad range of patrons and is currently lacking the Audio/Visual infrastructure to support them properly. This project will provide new systems to accommodate larger audiences and more advanced and inclusive programming. There will be a sound system installed, including microphones, control board, and speakers along with a video projection system, with a projector, player, and screen. A new portable SMART Board will also be purchased for mobile programs to increase accessibility.

Martin Community College Library
Instruction Lab                                                                              Award:  $22,633

The demographic makeup and service area of Martin Community College, which serves two Tier 1 counties, make our students particularly subject to the achievement gap that has been documented to exist between students of different races, income levels, and geographic areas.  Multiple studies have demonstrated that library use can improve students’ academic performance.  The Martin Community College Library’s goal is to decrease the achievement gap for our students by fully equipping the library’s new instruction lab and providing targeted programming.  The grant funding will provide tablets for use by a pilot class of curriculum students using open electronic textbooks, meeting in the library instruction lab, and having access to an embedded librarian, lecturers for a cultural lecture series in the lab, open to all MCC students, and book discussion group supplies.

Methodist University, Davis Memorial Library
PopUp, Pop In                                                                               Award:  $6,406

In an effort to increase our Individualized Research Assistance (IRA) service, Methodist University’s Davis Memorial Library is seeking a LSTA grant to expand our “PopUp” Reference service on campus, as well as create a dedicated space within the library for those appointments to be held. By expanding the presence of the librarians on campus, as well as highlighting the one-on-one research assistance that is available to students, the librarians at Davis Memorial Library hope to create a more personalized relationship with students on campus, thus removing some of the intimidation of utilizing the library and seeking out assistance, and in the long-term, help with student retention.

Orange County Public Library
2021-2024 Strategic Plan                                                           Award:  $32,438

Since 2017 we have invested significant resources to adopt a community-led philosophy. We have accomplished much, yet there are gaps we must address if we want to keep pace with the changing needs of our community. We see this planning process as an opportune time to receive feedback from internal and external stakeholders, and with this input update our vision and mission statements and core values. Our goal is to create a strategic plan that equips us to use a lens of diversity, equity and inclusion to grow our collections, programs, and services, permit staff who want to go out in to the community to do so, bring an entrepreneurial mindset to finding solutions to address community needs, and create a culture that enables us to move forward with greater clarity and sense of purpose.

Pettigrew Regional Library
Interactive Media                                                                         Award:  $22,100

The Pettigrew Regional Library system seeks grant funding to provide equipment for the community businesses, genealogy groups and art related programming.  At the present time, only one of our libraries has an board available for presentations.  The other libraries need this equipment so that we will be able to provide the space and equipment needed to make all of our libraries the place to go for presentations in our communities.

Polk County Public Libraries
Strategic Plan FY21-26                                                                Award:  $22,975

Polk County Public Libraries (PCPL) will hire a consultant to conduct and facilitate the creation of a comprehensive strategic planning process to result in a five-year strategic plan for FY2021-FY2026. The consultant will collaborate with PCPL staff, the Library Board of Trustees, community stakeholders, and the users of PCPL services to create a plan that shapes the future of library services in Polk County. The planning process will include an environmental scan, community-wide surveys, and focus groups to identify community needs and inform priorities. The resulting plan will serve as a guide to ensure that PCPL is positioned to serve the Polk County community and its evolving needs.

Robeson County Public Library
RCPL FY21-26 Plan                                                                       Award:  $26,025

The Robeson County Public Library intends to orient library services and spaces to meet the evolving needs of our diverse community. A new five-year strategic and facility plan will be needed to appropriately capture community and stakeholder input to design the priorities and objectives, as well as identify space needs throughout the county. In 2020-2021 the Library will hire a consultant to facilitate this vital process. The new five-year strategic plan will be shared with the staff and Trustees, marketed to the community, and then implemented FY 2021-2022.

Union County Public Library
Staff & Strategic Plan                                                                  Award:  $30,120

The Union County Public Library will formally complete a comprehensive planning process led by a consultant focused on aligning the public’s current and future needs with library services and staffing.  By conducting both a strategic plan and a staffing analysis, the library will be better positioned to serve the residents of Union County.  Furthermore, with a new library being constructed, the library can ensure its newest facility is adequately equipped with staff, programs, and services to best serve our patrons.  Our hired consultant will facilitate the process of gathering input from our various stakeholders and compiling that feedback into attainable goals that will help guide the direction of the library’s programs and services over the next three to five years.

Vance-Granville Community College Library
Advancing the Library                                                                 Award:  $28,952

Vance-Granville Community College intends to the strengthen the capacity of the library and its students by equipping students with up-to-date technology.  Laptops, tablets, smartboards, and other technologies will be purchased to create collaborative and flexible workspaces in the library.

Wayne County Public Library
Roadmap for Wayne Co.                                                            Award:  $11,560

In order to ensure community members have access to comfortable, efficient, up-to-date, and inviting library facilities, in 2020-2021 Wayne County Public Library seeks to hire an experienced consultant to develop a comprehensive strategic plan for library facilities for the county.  The purpose of the plan will be to identify current and future library facility needs for Wayne County and to develop recommendations for addressing the needs. The primary outcome for this project will be that the library will gain a greater knowledge and understanding of the community's needs regarding library spaces and facilities.

Western Carolina University
A New Library Consortia                                                             Award:  $20,566

Western Carolina University (WCU) requests funding to engage a consultant to assist with planning a collaborative library consortia in partnership with Appalachian State University (ASU), the University of North Carolina at Asheville (UNCA), North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (NCAT),  the University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNCC), the University of North Carolina at Pembroke (UNCP), the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG), East Carolina University (ECU), the University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW), and the UNC School of the Arts (UNCSA). The consultant will work with assigned representatives of the libraries and with library administrators to prepare and submit recommendations for establishing and operating the new consortia, including the key areas of governance, funding, and operations.

Wilson County Public Library
WCPL Strategic Plan 2021-2026                                               Award:  $22,133

The Wilson County Public Library has completed the goals of our 2015-2020 Long-Range Plan and is seeking LSTA funding to inform the Library’s service priorities for 2021-2026.  Our goal is to align programs, services, and spaces in ways that address community challenges and reflect the needs of our diverse population.  Wilson County is well-known for its collaborative efforts to engage stakeholders in building a stronger community for all citizens.  The Library is already included in these community-wide efforts and seeks to design a five-year plan that incorporates and supports future initiatives.

Expanding Access

Expanding Access

Projects listed below address Goal 2 of the 2018-2022 LSTA Five Year Plan.

Expanding Access: North Carolinians will have expanded access to resources for learning and success in school, work, and life..

Avery-Mitchell-Yancey Regional Library System
AMY Regional Migration                                                            Award:  $10,000

NC Cardinal is a growing consortium of North Carolina public libraries with the goal of sharing resources and expanding opportunities through using a single online catalog. The State Library provides initial startup/migration funding for participating libraries to join the consortium. Hardware, software support, and training contracts are funded by the LSTA Grant.

Braswell Memorial Library
STREAM Creator Lab                                                                   Award:  $15,000

Braswell Memorial Library will develop a STREAM creator lab which will include STREAM (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Art and Math) activity programs.  The activities will compliment skills learned in school, enhance both digital and traditional literacy activities, offer exposure to more technology and provide year round learning sessions.  The STREAM creator lab will consist of four in-library sessions per month for nine months (September through May) and two outreach sessions per month for six months (October through March) with a maximum of 25 participants ages 8-15 in each session.  These STREAM activities will include but are not limited to robotics, coding, virtual reality, crafts and book clubs.

Burke County Public Library
Burke County Migration                                                              Award:  $10,000

NC Cardinal is a growing consortium of North Carolina public libraries with the goal of sharing resources and expanding opportunities through using a single online catalog. The State Library provides initial startup/migration funding for participating libraries to join the consortium. Hardware, software support, and training contracts are funded by the LSTA Grant.

Carteret County Public Libraries
Carteret County Migration                                                         Award:  $10,000

NC Cardinal is a growing consortium of North Carolina public libraries with the goal of sharing resources and expanding opportunities through using a single online catalog. The State Library provides initial startup/migration funding for participating libraries to join the consortium. Hardware, software support, and training contracts are funded by the LSTA Grant.

Catawba County Library
Community Navigator                                                                 Award:  $37,582

The library will partner with Appalachian State University to host interns from the School of Social Work to work at the library interviewing high-need patrons, assessing their most immediate needs, and referring them to community resources when possible. Through direct interactions interns will help people navigate services, provide mental health first aid, and facilitate training for library staff including de-escalation strategies and trauma informed care. This project allows the library to strengthen our capacity to connect people to essential resources and to empower library staff to provide exceptional programs and services. It expands our community's access to resources for learning and success in school, work, and life by engaging in a deeper and more meaningful way to meet patrons in need where they are without judgment or stigma. This project further strengthens the library’s approach to helping people in need of social-service assistance and reinforces the value of public libraries as a critical community resource aligned to meet community need.

Central Carolina Community College
Bridging AASL Standards                                                            Award:  $5,117

This project aims to provide a series of intensive, entertaining, and educationally-focused sessions to 3rd year students early college high schools in Chatham, Lee and Harnett counties. Students are at the Chatham School of Science and Engineering in Siler City, then move to the Pittsboro campus of CCCC (16 miles away) for their 3-5 years in the program. The library hosts workshops for Information Literacy to aid in the transition, give students a sense of comfort in the library, and teach the basic skills needed to conduct research for their college level courses. This project seeks to continue and strengthen these workshops in Chatham county, while also addressing similar issues in each of the college’s three county service areas. The workshops aim to help students bridge the gap between high school and college level research, mapping the AASL National School Library Standards to the ACRL Framework for Information Literacy. The five AASL Standards are: Inquire, Include, Collaborate, Curate, and Explore.

Chapel Hill Public Library
Chapel Hill Foodways                                                                  Award:  $36,000

Chapel Hill Foodways will be a year-long  exploration of food traditions, history, and culture in Chapel Hill. This exploration will focus on new immigrant communities as well as untold histories behind our local southern cuisine. We’ll learn from historians, chefs, farmers, foodworkers and home cooks about what our foods tell us about who we are, where we’ve been, and what we might become in the future. This project will enhance Chapel Hill Public Library’s (CHPL) reputation as a leader in and convener of community history and heritage. Project elements will include a digital exhibit, a podcast series, a community cookbook, and a series of hands-on workshops and events.

Chapel Hill Public Library
Green Way StoryWalks                                                               Award:  $48,600

Chapel Hill Public Library’s Green Way StoryWalk project will connect kids and families with children’s books that unfold outdoors, along accessible local green way trails. Green Way StoryWalks will showcase environmentally-themed books featuring diverse voices, protagonists, authors, illustrators, and languages. This project will put engaging, curated, educational content out into the community, regularly providing fresh opportunities for kids to develop as readers and learners. The project will enhance the library’s reputation as a certified NC Environmental Education Center and leader in providing environmental education programming, nature play opportunities, and robust reading readiness and literacy services. Library staff will partner with local independent book sellers to curate locally-relevant titles, and work with the Town of Chapel Hill’s Parks & Recreation Department and neighborhood groups to site the installations in high-impact locations. Two Green Way StoryWalks installations will be launched with project funds in spring 2021. New stories will be mounted every other month.

Durham County Library
Website Translation                                                                     Award:  $9,000

This project aims to translate Durham County Library’s website into Spanish. The library’s website is our virtual branch. Much like our physical branches allow people to come regardless of the language they speak, we want to ensure that our virtual branch is accessible in the same way. Approximately 34,617 people over age five in Durham County speak Spanish at home. Of those, 51.3% or 17,759 people “speak English less than ‘very well.’” The website is a critical access point for understanding and utilizing the library’s resources. Current options for Spanish speakers who need to access the library’s website are limited and based on confusing and often incorrect automated translations. This project will provide an accurate, user-friendly Spanish translation of the library’s website.

East Carolina University
STEM search                                                                                  Award:  $17,196

East Carolina University’s (ECU) J.Y. Joyner Library seeks to expand access to resources, opportunities, and experiences that strengthen science literacy and learning in eastern North Carolina.  Project goals are: strengthen capacity through website transformation; increase engagement with the educational community through collaboration among institutions specializing in informal learning opportunities; and further the national five-year plan for STEM Education. ECU is actively collaborating with three museum and science centers located in eastern North Carolina (ENC).  The institutions are: A Time for Science (The North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences at Greenville), Aurora Fossil Museum, and Sylvan Heights Bird Park. The interface will search across the three educational institutions for information about STEM learning resources and content.  The partnership outcomes are a blending of formal and informal learning, increased engagement with learners where science disciplines converge, and expanded use of digital platforms for teaching and learning.

Franklin County Library
Franklin Voyager                                                                          Award:  $100,000

North Carolinians will have expanded access to resources for learning and success in school, work and life through this request for funding a specialty vehicle for use as a mobile library and information services platform. The project design encompasses the build and deployment of a dynamic library platform in the sense that it not only will deliver traditional and non-traditional bookmobile services but enable the discovery of new locations and the participation of service area populations related to place, business, civic affiliations and interest. The mobile platform will assure that our brand and its services are more widely recognized and engaged for recreational, informational and educational access.

Gibsonville Public Library
Engaging en Español                                                                   Award:  $18,653

As part of an effort to better serve our spanish-speaking community, The Gibsonville Public Library will engage non-library users through targeted pop-up library outreach events, spanish-language communication channels, and the addition of a bilingual part-time staff person.  We will gather feedback from the community and use their input to select spanish-languge materials and resources that meet their needs. We will also create and/or provide resources for existing staff members to help make interactions with spanish-speaking residents more positive and fruitful. By partnering with local groups that already have ties to the spanish-speaking community, we will increase the number of residents we are able to reach and serve.

Iredell County Public Library
Sensory Storytime                                                                        Award:  $11,241

The Iredell County Public Library proposes to create a sensory storytime for children on the autism spectrum and/or with sensory processing issues to enjoy books, literacy and social interaction. By partnering with the Iredell County Partnership for Young Children, staff will receive training and tips on best practices for sensory storytime. This sensory storytime will include early literacy elements that are part of a more traditional storytime, but materials will be presented in a manner and environment that make children and parents feel secure, at ease and welcomed. In addition to storytime, the library will have available to all patrons, mounted sensory panels for play located in the Youth Services department of the main branch in Statesville, and kits of manipulatives for parents to borrow for their children. The manipulative kits will be available for patrons at all three branches.

Lincoln County Public Library
Beyond the Book                                                                          Award:  $50,000

As part of the its mission, the Lincoln County Public Library is committed to literacy and fostering a love for reading. In an effort to increase interest in reading and proficiency in writing, the library will be partnering with Lincoln County Schools to provide author/illustrator talks and writing workshops for children in 2nd through 5th grades. These programs will take place at the library and at select schools across the county. Storywalks® will be installed to help promote the events and introduce works by guest authors/illustrators. After the event, students will be given “My Story” books so they can author their own stories. Teachers will help coordinate a county-wide writing challenge and select some of the best works to be compiled in a bound anthology.  Beyond the Book will help engage, excite and expand the reading and writing skills of children in Lincoln County.

McDowell County Public Library
MCPL Mobile Resource Center                                                  Award:  $100,000

The McDowell County Public Library System would like to purchase a bookmobile, a Sprinter Van, to bring library, county, and community resources and opportunities out into the community.  Doing so would allow us to not only bring needed library services, but to go beyond the traditional use of bookmobiles and expand its purpose by bringing these partnerships and the community members that need their resources together.  Acquisition of the bookmobile, including the RFP process, can be accomplished in the 2020-2021 fiscal year. The project will serve all of McDowell County’s population of 45,159 with a goal of providing access to our underserved populations who struggle to access library and community resources, including seniors, children, teens, and those living in low socio-economic areas or those with transportation barriers.

Mitchell Community College
Make It at Mitchell                                                                      Award:  $50,000

The Huskins Library at Mitchell Community College will establish a flexible and multi-functional makerspace lab to support students, faculty, and staff. The creation of the makerspace lab within the library will foster interdisciplinary partnership, cooperation, and innovation. The versatile space will have broad appeal and contain a wide variety of tools, ranging from high-tech to low-tech, and non-technical materials. The makerspace lab will encourage discovery and exploration within a safe, supervised environment. Skills learned in the lab will enhance classroom experiences and contribute to mastery of 21st century skills necessary to work cooperatively and think outside the box. The creative space will cultivate use of tools often used in an employment setting. Exposure to such tools and materials will develop transferable skills, from lab to workplace.

Neuse Regional Library
Literacy Without Barriers                                                           Award:  $29,121

Parents who support their child's learning contribute to their child's success both in school and in life.  Yet parents and caregivers are often ill-prepared to partner in their child's learning due to lack of educational attainment and limited technology access.  The Neuse Regional Library will support several types of literacy through programs and services that address the intergenerational nature of literacy, and support parents as the first teachers of their children.  The Neuse Regional Library will create literacy centers at four locations within the region to meet the essential educational and technology needs of families through (1) one-on-one adult literacy tutoring by trained staff and volunteers that promotes economic growth, increased self-esteem, and empowerment; (2) homework help to prepare children for success in school and life experiences through tutoring; (3) interactive literacy activities between parent and child; and (4) access to technology and internet connectivity to eliminate homework gap barriers.

Northwestern Regional Library
Business in Community                                                               Award:  $46,548

Business in Community is a collaborative digital history project to continue the Surry County “Saving Our Communities” project. The development of local business and industry was a crucial element in the formation of communities in Surry County, NC.  Local businesses were, in many cases, formed by families in the community and are important in documenting community life in the 19th and 20th centuries.  This project will preserve materials related to history of businesses and industries in Surry County and will include retail and service businesses, farming (tobacco, lumber, dairy & viticulture/wineries), railroads, manufacturing, hospitality, and tourism.  It will also add a photographic-rich record to the Surry Digital Heritage website, which currently exceeds 5,600 items.  Northwestern Regional Library is the coordinator for this phase of the project. Principal partners will be: Surry Community College Library, Mount Airy Museum of Regional History, African American Historical and Genealogical Society of Surry County, Surry County Genealogy Association, and Surry County Historical Society.

Onslow County Public Library
Mobile Makerspace                                                                     Award:  $11,790

The Onslow County Public Library (OCPL) consists of four branches in which patrons utilize every day.  One service that OCPL does not currently offer to the patrons is a makerspace program.  Through this grant, we hope to provide a mobile makerspace to each branch of OCPL (Richlands, Sneads Ferry, Swansboro, and the Main branch in Jacksonville). These mobile makerspaces will help children, teens and adults explore new opportunities and discover different career paths and hobbies that they may have never been exposed to. These four makerspaces will consist of (1) 3D printing, (2) circuits, coding and programming, (3) Embroidery and Sewing and (4) Virtual Reality.  The mobile makerspaces will allow Onslow County to better serve patrons through new programs and experiential learning with these maker activities in which patrons can learn in small-group settings.

Onslow County Public Library
Onslow County Migration                                                          Award:  $10,000

NC Cardinal is a growing consortium of North Carolina public libraries with the goal of sharing resources and expanding opportunities through using a single online catalog. The State Library provides initial startup/migration funding for participating libraries to join the consortium. Hardware, software support, and training contracts are funded by the LSTA Grant.

Orange County Public Library
Outreach Specialist                                                                      Award:  $37,500

The Orange County Public Library seeks to expand the reach of resources and services to children from birth to fifth grade in underserved rural communities in Orange County. A Children’s Outreach Specialist will work with partners including community centers, schools, childcare centers, and organizations such as Head Start and the Health Department to meet the literacy and educational needs of Orange County’s youngest residents. The Outreach Specialist will use the “Boxmobile” service to take books and programs out into community spaces where children and families gather - bridging the access divide for children in Orange County.

Community Engagement

Community Engagement

Projects listed below address Goal 3 of the 2018-2022 LSTA Five Year Plan

Community Engagement: North Carolinians will have libraries that are more effective because they cooperate, coordinate, collaborate, and communicate to help the community address its needs.

Neuse Regional Library
Wi-Fi For All                                                                    Award:  $75,000

The Neuse Regional Libraries will increase access to wireless broadband Internet in Jones County, North Carolina.The Library will establish 10 drive-in Wi-Fi locations throughout the County. This project will include the purchase of two under-200 feet towers placed in strategic locations in the heart of Jones County to reach formerly inaccessible regions of the County, ensuring that the project will be able to reach all ten of the planned Wi-Fi public hotspots. The Library will also make Chromebook laptops available to the public for checkout. By making these laptops available to the public, the Library will ensure that every Jones County resident has access to a device that can be used with the public Wi-Fi hotspots to complete educational and career-related tasks. By increasing access to wireless internet, the Library will reduce the homework gap facing local students while also providing residents with new opportunities for educational and career growth.

University of North Carolina Wilmington, William Madison Randall Library
The NC 7th District                                                                       Award:  $38,550

As the 2020 elections approach, residents and students in Southeast North Carolina find themselves navigating a contentious political climate as they cast their votes not only for President, but also for their Congressional Representatives in the Seventh and Ninth Districts, a United States Senator, Governor, and a host of other state and local offices. The Libraries at the University of North Carolina Pembroke (UNCP) and the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) will take this opportunity to encourage civic engagement in and promote non-partisan dialog about the political process. Both libraries will accomplish these goals by enhancing access to their resources related to the Federal government through public programming, exhibits, and the digitization and promotion of archival materials and government publications.

Wayne County Public Library
Dudley, NC Digital Inclusion                                                                     Award:  $75,000

This project will have a three-pronged approach (access, devices, and technical support services) to help provide an equity of digital resources for the Dudley community.  Wayne County Public Library seeks to provide broadband access to the Dudley community by placing Open Broadband antennas on a mast attached to the water tower located within the Dudley community. This project will also provide a free, high speed , public Wi-Fi access point outside of the Steve and Susan Parr Family Learning Center in Dudley.  Funds will also be used to purchase 30 Chromebooks to be loaned to the families who have children enrolled at the learning center and to their siblings who attend Brogden Primary School.  Wayne County Public Library staff will provide comprehensive technology training on topics including, but not limited to, e-government services, library digital resources, and school related apps and websites.

Special & Statewide Leadership

Special & Statewide Leadership

Special Projects

Special Projects are those that arise on an ad hoc basis which meet the requirements of the LSTA plan and priorities and that have a clear benefit for the libraries of a community of interest or for all of the state’s libraries.

North Carolina Library Association
2020 NCLA Leadership Institute                                               Award:  $5,000

The NCLA Leadership Institute is an intensive four-day residential event designed to cultivate and inspire North Carolina library leaders. The institute will take place September 16-19, 2020 at Black Mountain YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly in Black Mountain, NC. In addition to the four-day event, participation in the Leadership Institute requires the following commitment from each participant: a one-year commitment to engage in a group mentor/mentee relationship, attendance at a one-day follow up session, and participation in the 2021 NCLA Biennial Conference. The mission of the Leadership Institute is to create opportunities for learning and skill building in leadership and mentoring. The Institute cultivates an improved understanding of self and others while inspiring participants to serve in leadership roles within the profession at local, state, and national levels. This project is requesting funding to support the Leadership Institute to assist with strengthening library leadership throughout the state of North Carolina.

UNC-Chapel Hill University Libraries
NC Digital Heritage Center                                                        Award:  $525,573

The North Carolina Digital Heritage Center supports community engagement and lifelong learning by promoting and increasing access to North Carolina's cultural heritage. The Center does this by helping libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural heritage institutions throughout the state to digitize materials from their local and family history collections and make them freely accessible online. The Center also helps North Carolina institutions share information about their digital collections with a national audience through the Digital Public Library of America. The Center is committed to providing fast and flexible services that meet the changing needs of North Carolina's cultural heritage institutions.


Statewide Leadership

Statewide Leadership Projects are those with broad, statewide impact and are developed by the State Library in response to emerging or broad-based needs that are consistent with the LSTA plan and priorities.

21st Century Libraries will provide access to the LibGuides platform for the State Library of North Carolina, 58 community college libraries, and 82 public library systems across the state.  This platform allows library staff to easily create online content for users in a hosted environment. 

#EverythingNC engages users by making State Library materials freely accessible, collaborates with other organizations to preserve and make digital content available, and engages with a growing digital preservation community. We will maintain our established collaboration with the State Archives of North Carolina (SANC) through continued testing of LibSafe for digital preservation, developing a pilot collection in the CollectionBuilder tool, and expanding access to military oral histories of North Carolina veterans. We will also develop and broaden access to our Personal Digital Archiving workshops, both onsite and across the state, while pursuing plans to establish a statewide digital preservation community.

Adult Services goal is to provide professional development opportunities and collaborative experiences to enhance or improve library staff skills in providing programs and services to the diverse group of adult users throughout the state. 

Building Partnerships will provide teachers the opportunity to attend workshops delivering expert instruction on primary sources that can be customized to the needs of school districts statewide. The NC Government & Heritage Library and the UNC Greensboro University Libraries have partnered to address this need by implementing workshops designed in year 1 of this project. These workshops provide teachers with expert instruction on information literacy and primary sources which can be adapted to a virtual format and customized to the needs of school districts statewide. Through year 1 of this project, the planning committee identified K-12 district partners, created workshop curriculum and assessment tools, and developed application and selection criteria. During year 2, these identified K-12 partners will (by region/district) be invited to send teams of teachers to the workshop; this team format will help schools develop their own multi-disciplinary approach to implement the knowledge gained, once back in the classroom. As these six in person workshops progress, the planning committee will work with presenters to record online versions of the presentations to create a module-based virtual workshop in which all school districts across North Carolina can participate.

Continuing Education will support and provide professional development opportunities for North Carolina library staff in order to improve services and access to resources. The Continuing Education program provides access to in-person learning opportunities and online resources that enhance library services and promote excellence and innovation. This project will also support scholarships for library staff to attend relevant regional, state, and national conferences, as well as scholarships to online courses that meet the continuing education needs identified through the 2018-2020 Continuing Education Survey. 

Evaluation and Assessment  seeks to empower library staff to implement formative and summative evaluation strategies to improve service to library users by providing data focused training and supporting a peer learning cohort. This year’s training will offer up to 10-12 webinars, up to 2 in-person learning opportunities, up to 4 virtual peer learning cohort meetings and access to LibPAS, the software used to report Public Library Survey data.

LD CONNECT's goal of providing exceptional service will be through education/training and fostering community engagement.  the project specifically provides foundational education and/or focused training and community engagement opportunities via programming, scholarships, and online resources.

NC Cardinal provides North Carolina residents with greater access to North Carolina resources by providing the tools, framework and expertise necessary to administer a common, online catalog, share catalog items among member libraries and expand opportunities for optimization of cost efficiencies and collaborative collection development. NC Cardinal seeks to improve resource sharing throughout the NC Cardinal consortium by conducting a consortium-wide assessment of resource sharing activities, focusing on the mechanisms and procedures used for resource sharing, analysis of the return on investment that a shared integrated library system and shared materials offer to Cardinal member libraries, and any possibilities for shared collection development.

New Director Orientation project will provide a two-day orientation at the State Library for North Carolina Public Library Directors who are new to their positions to share information on the services of the State Library, Library Development, Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Government Heritage Library and other North Carolina partner agencies; and to provide learning opportunities with other new directors.

Public Library Standards 2021 will fund the work of a selected professional consultant to create an effective North Carolina public library standards document and implementation resources that will serve as a dynamic tool providing consistent, community focused and measurable guidelines applicable to all public libraries. Data collected from the 2019-20 LSTA funded public library standards assessment project will be shared with the consultant and used in the drafting of standards.

Scholarships will fund the attendance of public, academic, community college, and special library staff to local, state, and national conferences of their choice as it relates to their positions within libraries. On a quarterly basis, State Library staff will review the applications submitted to ensure that applications illustrate the relevance of the conference and how attendance ties to the State Library’s LSTA Program 5-Year Plan priorities

SLNC Professional Development will specifically provide educational and training opportunities at the individual and organizational levels via programming, formal training activities and conference attendance for SLNC staff.

Youth Services will provide professional development opportunities centered around services for birth through teens which will result in improved programs and resources in North Carolina libraries. Both in-person and online continuing education opportunities will be provided to maximize impact. The project will also provide travel for the project manager to attend a national conference for teens services in public libraries. Continuing education opportunities will be evenly spread across the age spectrum. 

LSTA Program Administration funds the majority of LSTA administrative costs incurred by the State Library.



LSTA mini-grant awards list below are made possible by funding from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-00-19-0034-19).

COVID-19 Response Mini-Grants

To assist North Carolina libraries in responding to the coronavirus pandemic, the SLNC provided funding to help libraries prepare to reopen to the public and adapt services to reduce the impact of COVID-19. This mini-grant program supports Goal One of North Carolina’s Five-Year Plan: Strengthening Capacity. SLNC awarded $261,500 to 125 libraries across the state:

Alamance County Public Libraries
Albemarle Regional Library
AMY Regional Library System
Appalachian Regional Library
Beaufort County Community College
Belmont Abbey College, Abbot Vincent Taylor Library
Bennett College
BHM Regional Library
Bladen Community College
Bladen County Public Library
Brunswick County Library
Buncombe County Public Library
Burke County Public Library
Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute Broyhill Learning Resource Center
Campbell University Inc. 
Cape Fear Community College
Carteret Community College
Caswell County Public Library
Catawba College
Catawba County Library
Catawba Valley Community College
Central Carolina Community College
Central Piedmont Community College
Chapel Hill Public Library
Chatham County Public Libraries
Chowan University - Whitaker Library
College of the Albemarle
Columbus County Public Library System
Craven Community College, Godwin Memorial Library
Craven-Pamlico-Carteret Regional Library
Cumberland County Public Library & Information Center
Davidson County Public Library
Davie County Public Library
Duplin County Library
Durham Technical Community College Library
East Albemarle Regional Library System
Edgecombe Community College
Edgecombe County Memorial Library
Elizabeth City State University G. R. Little Library
Elon University
Farmville Public Library
Fayetteville State University, Charles W. Chesnutt Library
Fontana Regional Library
Franklin County Library
Gaston College
George H. & Laura E. Brown Library
Greensboro College, James Addison Jones Library
Guilford College - Hege Library
H. D. Cooley Library
Halifax Community College
Harnett County Library
Haywood Community College
Haywood County Public Library
Hickory Public Library
High Point Public Library
High Point University
Hocutt-Ellington Memorial Library
Iredell County Public Library
Isothermal Community College
Johnston Community College
Lee County Libraries
Lees-McRae College
Lenoir Community College
Lenoir-Rhyne University
Lincoln County Public Library
Louisburg College
Madison County Public Libraries
Martin Community College
McDowell County Public Library
Meredith College, Carlyle Campbell Library
Methodist University, Davis Memorial Library
Mitchell Community College
Nantahala Regional Library
Nash Community College
Neuse Regional Libraries
North Carolina A&T State University
North Carolina Central University, James E. Shepard Memorial Library
Northwestern Regional Library
Onslow County Public Library
Pamlico Community College 
Pender County Library
Pettigrew Regional Library
Pfeiffer University
Piedmont Community College, Learning Commons
Polk County Public Libraries
Queens University of Charlotte, Everett Library
Randolph Community College Library
Randolph County Public Library
Roanoke Rapids Public Library
Roanoke-Chowan Community College Learning Resources Center
Robeson Community College
Robeson County Public Library
Rockingham Community College,  James Library
Rockingham County Public Library
Rowan Public Library
Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
Rutherford County Library
Saint Augustine's University, The Prezell R. Robinson Library
Salem Academy & College
Sampson-Clinton Public Library System
Sandhill Regional Library System
Sandhills Community College
Scotland County Memorial Library
Shaw University
Sheppard Memorial Library
South Piedmont Community College
Southern Pines Public Library
Southwestern Community College
St. Andrews Presbyterian College
Stanly Community College Library
Stanly County Public Library
UNC Asheville,  D. Hiden Ramsey Library
UNC School of the Arts Library
Union County Public Library
University of Mount Olive, Moye Library
University of North Carolina at Pembroke
University of North Carolina at Wilmington
Vance-Granville Community College
Wake County Public Libraries
Wake Tech Community College
Wayne County Public Library
Western Carolina University
Western Piedmont Community College Library
Wilkes Community College
Wilson County Public Library

Community Connections

Community Connections grants provide grant funding to libraries to hold unique, interactive, community-oriented events or programs. These events will promote the culture or history of participating communities and should be designed to strengthen relationships between people from different backgrounds through diverse learning experiences. Successful applications will highlight notable North Carolina women or women’s issues and interests in conjunction with the She Changed the World initiative. These grants are offered under goal 3 of the LSTA Five Year Plan: Community Engagement.

Appalachian Regional Library
Ashe County Public Library’s Veteran History Project – Vol. 3

This is the third year that our community has been documenting stories of local veterans.  This year our focus will be on female veterans, as well as women who played important roles on the home front. This is an ongoing event and has gained momentum and community interest since our first project in 2018. The process of gathering stories has several facets and involves multi-generational participation.

Chapel Hill Public Library
I Was Still Singing

“I Was Still Singing” will be an exhibit highlighting the contributions of Chapel Hill’s African American women elders. The goal of this exhibit is to educate and inspire local people and to honor the women who have contributed so much to the Chapel Hill community through a public history exhibit that is interactive, accessible and engaging for a broad audience.

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Engage HER Women’s Conference

The year 2020 will be a pivotal time for our country and our community. The census takes place in March, determining congressional representation across the state and nation. August 2020 marks the centennial of the ratification of the 19th amendment guaranteeing and protecting women’s right to vote.  August also brings the Republican National Convention to Charlotte.  Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is planning to tie these events together under the theme Engage 2020: Look Back, Move Forward.  In partnership with the Digital Public Library of America, Levine Museum of the New South, and other organizations, the Library will work to amplify the stories of notable women, especially women of color, from the first suffragists to current local elected officials.  Using the “She Changed the World” Toolkit and speaker panel for inspiration, the project will focus on a variety of programming platforms from book clubs, to facilitated conversations, to the collection of personal narratives around voting and civic engagement.   For the purposes of this LSTA grant, we are proposing a Women’s Conference to take place in May 2020.

East Carolina University
Creating Communities: Documenting Women’s Stories in Eastern NC

We plan to hold three programs in Greenville, North Carolina:
1. “How to Find the Hidden Women in your Family Tree” by Diane Richard
2. Panel and community conversation where notable women in our community and attendees share their stories
3. Writing workshop where women practice documenting their own stories or those of women notable in their lives
The overall mission of these events is to recognize and bring attention to voices that have traditionally been left out of the historical record and to continue capturing records to fill collection holes.  East Carolina University’s Special Collections lacks diversity, particularly in regards to women of color.

Farmville Public Library
She Changed the World-How Local Women Shape our Communities

In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment which ensured women wouldn’t be denied the right to vote based on their sex, Farmville Public Library will host a series of programs exploring the experiences and contributions of American women to public life as they broke barriers in education, the arts, science and technology, and government. The purpose of the series is to bring to life the stories of local women who have impacted the community as well as highlight the accomplishments of women on the regional and national level. A goal of the series is to allow all members of the community to see themselves reflected in programs offered by the library. This means accounting for the triumphs of the movement as well as the faults, such as the marginalization and exclusion of African American women from the right to vote by white women

Guilford Technical Community College
Valiant Women of Strength

The goal of our Valiant Women of Strength series is to celebrate Women’s History Month and the 100th year ratification anniversary of the 19th Amendment, giving women the right to vote. These events will increase student, faculty, staff, and community awareness of women’s history and suffrage and will include “lesser known” NC women, including women of color; who should have been included among the many publicized women trailblazers.

Hickory Public Library
Remembering Ridgeview: A Photographic Collection of a Community

We wish to preserve and document the lived experiences of the Ridgeview community by collecting photographs and documents that tell the personal story of those that lived and continue to live here. Our goal is to collect any and all relevant materials that tell the story of the Ridgeview neighborhood, but will focus our efforts on gathering materials related to the notable women of this community that we will exhibit during our annual Women’s History Month event in March 2020.

Mitchell Community College
She Gather Me: A Celebration of Women

Four weekly programs will occur during March to celebrate Women’s History Month and the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment.  During Week 1, the Library will host a panel of diverse, accomplished local women, who will speak on the topic of, “What I Know Now,” in which they will describe what piece of information or advice they most wish that their younger selves would have known before they entered their respective careers.  Guest speakers will include one or more members of Leading Ladies of Statesville and the Statesville Women’s Club.  After the presentation, a round table discussion will occur, during which audience members will have the opportunity to ask the panelists questions.  This event will honor the achievements of local women, foster relationships among individuals from different demographics, and promote networking and discussion among women in the community.

Neuse Regional Libraries
Women Build Worlds

2020 marks the centennial of the passage of the 19th amendment. The Neuse Regional Library, comprised of Lenoir, Jones, and Greene counties, wants to emphasize the importance of this anniversary by offering the community opportunities to listen to and interact with highly accomplished women from North Carolina through a series named Women Build Worlds. Selected guest speakers will be diverse in both ethnicity and areas of specialization in order to introduce the community to various perspectives. A prominent female writer will speak about her experiences and lead a workshop with the specific intent to foster self-esteem and expression through creativity, a Kinston native and acclaimed jazz and gospel pianist will perform, and a local artist will give a lecture and showcase her work as well as lead a program for attendees to create art based on their own individual explorations of the feminine experience.

Gaston County Public Library
Someone Must Wash the Dishes:  An Anti-Suffrage Satire

Many people take the simple act of voting for granted and are not widely aware of the history of the women’s suffrage movement.  In the 2019 November election, only 18.95% of the Gaston County population voted.  Although this percentage is traditionally much higher during presidential elections, any opportunity to vote should not be taken for granted or ignored.  The goal of this program is to have Michele LaRue, a professional actress, perform an anti-suffrage monologue to illustrate some of the opinions of the time in an interesting way.  By having this program available to the people of Gaston County, we hope to get people to think about the importance of voting and to become more aware of the history of the time.

UNCW Randall Library
She Rocks the Vote: Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the 19th

To commemorate the centennial anniversary of women’s suffrage in the United States, the University of North Carolina Wilmington’s (UNCW) Randall Library will host “She Rocks the Vote: Celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the 19th Amendment,” an interactive special collections exhibit that will showcase the lower Cape Fear region’s historical ties to women’s voting rights. This will take place in March for Women’s History Month.  In collaboration with university’s Women’s Studies Resource Center (WSRC), Randall Library will digitize recently donated newsletters from the League of Women Voters of the Lower Cape Fear (LWVLCF), hold an event featuring North Carolina House of Representatives speaker Deb Butler, and house a physical exhibit featuring objects related to suffrage in the lower Cape Fear.

Wayne County Public Library
Gertrude, Ruth, & Dorothy: Well-Behaved Women Don’t Make History

Three women born and raised in Goldsboro broke major barriers in social justice, education, voting, law, and civil rights, not only in North Carolina, but with national and worldwide recognition.  This project complements the She Changed the World: NC Women Breaking Barriers initiative because the lives of Gertrude, Ruth, and Dorothy are incredibly important to share with newer generations. Though Gertrude lived most of her life in Goldsboro, she passed away 48 years ago. Ruth and Dorothy spent their professional careers in other parts of the country, and therefore had limited local exposure. Therefore, this grant will afford the library the opportunity to share their respective legacies throughout the county and with newer generations.

Winston-Salem State University
A Walk Through History: Women’s Fight to Vote

“A Walk Through History: Women’s Fight to Vote” will be a living museum event in which students interact with figures of history with emphasis on North Carolina women, such as Rosanell Eaton. The goal of this event is to inform the campus community about the journey women have taken to gain the right to vote. The living museum will walk attendees through different eras in the history of obtaining the right to vote for women: pre-1920s, Civil Rights, and contemporary period. In going through the museum, attendees will meet with different historical figures who played a role in either winning the right to vote, or campaigning to help women register to vote.

Diversity & Inclusion

Diversity & Inclusion grants provide libraries with the opportunity to promote a more equitable and inclusive place to read, research, study, and work.  Projects may be for events, services or patron spaces and/or staff work areas. 

Elon University
Reparative Archives: Acquisition, Advocacy, Utilization, Transformation

We are seeking funding to support a workshop titled “Reparative Archives: Acquisition, Advocacy, Utilization and Transformation.” This workshop, created and facilitated by Lae’l Hughes-Watkins of the University of Maryland, will provide members of the allied professions libraries, archives, and museums an opportunity to learn about approaching their work through a reparative lens. Hughes-Watkins will guide attendees in a discussion of how past practices have amplified certain voices while silencing others, and prepare attendees for doing more inclusive acquisition, processing, and instruction and dissemination.

Johnston Community College Library
Creating Adaptive Space to Support All Patrons

Johnston Community College’s (JCC) Diversity and Inclusions Mini-Grant will focus on modifying existing space to benefit students with differing abilities. The goal of the project is to create an accessible, collaborative space with assistive technology and materials in the Library’s current Wallace Ashley III Listening and Viewing room.

Orange County Public Library
The Orange County Oral History Project

The purpose of this event is to highlight, celebrate, and document for future generations the historical experience of the senior citizen African American population in Hillsborough, NC.

Randolph County Public Library
Liberty Public Library Early Literacy Accessibility

The goal of this grant is to increase accessibility to early literacy resources for young patrons of all abilities (and their caregivers) at the Liberty Public Library, a municipal library within the Randolph County Public Library System. The library will create child accessible books and materials, creating a comfortable environment for caretakers and families to engage with one another and spend time in the library, and providing manipulatives and interactives for different age ranges as well as sensory needs.

Health Literacy

Health Literacy grants provide grant funding to public and academic libraries to hold community-oriented health/wellness programs or projects. We encourage libraries to seek partners with a strong interest in your community’s health and wellness.

Appalachian Regional Library
Stories of Recovery:  Finding Hope and Help

The goal of this series of programs, ARL's 2019 Good Neighbor Project, is to educate the public on the widespread problem of substance addiction, to de-stigmatize the problem, and to point to local resources for help with addiction. These programs for a young adult audience are a subset of a larger program by the same name targeted toward adults. A National Network of Libraries of Medicine is funding the books, marketing, and author appearances for an adult audience.

Caldwell County Public Library
Circulating Cycles

The purpose of the pilot is to provide residents of Caldwell County free access to high quality bicycles to enjoy on our Greenway Trail system, or as a supplement to local transportation needs. The 2017 Caldwell County Community Health Assessment listed a lack of affordable healthy family activities and a lack of available healthy teen activities as some of the community issues that have the greatest effect on quality of life. And it listed a lack of exercise as one of the top five unhealthy behaviors in Caldwell County.  This program directly addresses those issues by providing a free bicycle sharing program to those who may not be able to afford a bicycle, or one for each member of the family.  Our main library is an access point to our extensive Greenway Trails system, making us a perfect spot for a bike share.

Caswell County Public Library
Young Mothers Support Group

For over a year, the Caswell Chapter of The Health Collaborative has been working to improve the health and well-being of our community, conducting multiple asset mapping, needs assessments, and visioning exercises. Input from multiple health and human service agencies/providers and the residents of a local low-income apartment complex, revealed a lack of parenting classes and mentors to young mothers, especially those without family support. Residents of the apartment complex expressed a particular need to find ways to connect with other parents and trustworthy neighbors in the community. This program would offer parenting classes and connection to an existing Parenting Support Group that meets monthly in the library. An added benefit includes the introduction of the young mothers, who may not otherwise have been familiar with library resources, to library programs and resources for them, as well as storytimes and beginning books for their children.

Catawba County Library
Live Well @ the Library: Get Fit

Because we believe in equity, and in lifelong learning, and because health is such a critical issue our community is facing, we are committed to being a partner in advancing healthy outcomes for all. Live Well @ the Library: Get Fit will provide a full complement of health resources and services and provide conveniently located, high-quality, engaging fitness, nutrition, and wellness classes to all community members for free. Citizens will have the ability to improve their health at their own pace and according to their own needs. Free and accessible opportunities for guided, safe exercise, nutrition, and wellness opportunities are crucially important, especially considering that Catawba County falls behind the state average in median household income and health insurance coverage, and since our priorities on our most recent Community Health Assessment were listed as physical inactivity, poor nutrition/active living, and chronic disease.

Cleveland Community College-Rose Library
Health Literacy Walking Trails

Cleveland Community College's (Cleveland CC) campus spans 40 acres, and is located in Shelby, NC, rural Cleveland County, centrally situated between Asheville and Charlotte. Cleveland County ranks in the unhealthiest tier, 80th of the 100 NC counties, in overall health outcomes according to the County Health Rankings published annually by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The goal of the project is to create, for the first time, marked, measured, and informative walking trails on the Cleveland CC campus. With thousands of students on campus each year and a variety of guests to the campus from contiguous locations, unique opportunities exist to benefit a large sector of the community with these walking trails. Cleveland CC's Rose Library desires to lead the initiative by coordinating the project in its entirety, including selecting health literacy statements from the ALA Health Literacy Toolkit to be placed on outdoor-quality signage strategically posted on trails.

Johnston Community College Library
Bringing Mindfulness to the Library

The purpose of this project is to provide free access to yoga and its health benefits and to promote healthy living and well-being for Johnston Community College’s (JCC) surrounding community. An article from The Programming Librarian perfectly summed up the purpose and benefit of this type of program, “As libraries move away from being places strictly for storing and retrieving written materials and into being important cultural and community hubs, it only makes sense to offer programs that will appeal to a wider audience of existing patrons and attract a demographic who might not be regularly visiting our spaces. Offering free wellness sessions to people who might not otherwise be able to afford them also aligns with our mandate to provide outreach, access and support to everyone in our community.” .

Orange County Public Library
Healthy Brains, Healthy Bodies

Orange County  Public Library will host a combination of workshops and series teaching practices for healthy aging, mindfulness, and overall wellness.  These programs invite the community to explore techniques that engage the body and mind in order to live a more balanced life.  Cost, inconvenient locations and schedules, and intimidation are often barriers to participation in wellness programs.  The library is excited to remove some of those barriers for the community by offering this important series.

Perry Memorial Library
Let's Get Moving

According to the Granville Vance Health Department’s current Community Health Assessment, Vance County is below the Healthy North Carolina 2020 target in many key areas:

  • Increase the percentage of adults reporting good, very good, or excellent health. (Vance 72.3% , Target 90.1%)
  • Reduce the cardiovascular disease mortality rate (per 100,000 population). (Vance 189.8, Target 161.5)
  • Decrease the percentage of adults with diabetes. (Vance 13% , Target 8.6%)
  • Decrease the average number of poor mental health days among adults in the past 30. (Vance 3, Target 2.8)

Physical activity is proven to have a positive impact on all of these areas. With our proposed program titled “Let’s Get Moving!” we will provide a series of passive and active programs aimed at getting the community to increase their physical activity.

Person County Public Library
Introduction to Mindfulness

Mindfulness is the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something. Mindfulness has been proven to help with relieving stress and anxiety, alleviating depression,  treating heart disease, lowering blood pressure, reducing chronic pain, improving sleep, and alleviating gastrointestinal difficulties. Along with learning mindfulness techniques, participants would also learn basic Yoga and Tai Chi movements for alleviating stress and chronic pain. The goal of this program is to introduce Person County citizens of all ages to the benefits of incorporating mindfulness, yoga, and Tai Chi  into their daily routines through a series of six mindfulness sessions with an instructor. The Library would also add additional materials and resources on the subject to the collection for further learning enhancers to the sessions.

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
Connect-to-Wellness @ Rowan-Cabarrus CC Library

The goal of the Library programming for the 2019-2020 school year, Connect-to-Wellness @ the Library, is to offer opportunities for the Rowan-Cabarrus community to explore physical, financial, environmental, social, spiritual, intellectual, emotional, and occupational wellness. Twenty-first-century demands require a new approach to education to adequately prepare students for college, career, and citizenship.  Through this program, the whole person will be addressed through a series of events and programming for students, faculty, and staff.  Funding will be used to purchase equipment and materials for a variety of activities and events throughout the academic school year, including FitDesk Bikes, yoga ball chairs, and materials to create meditative, thinking spaces within the Library such as acoustic panels and white noise machines. The Rowan-Cabarrus community will benefit by using the equipment and participating in collaborative events planned by the Library and conducted in coordination with other Rowan-Cabarrus departments such as the Colleges Wellness Center.

Wake County Public Libraries
Wake Moves Together (WMT)

Wake County Public Libraries (WCPL) is planning a synchronous, multigenerational movement program in ten libraries to be held in January 2020.. The program will be scheduled at the same time on the same day in our Every Family Ready to Achieve libraries which serve our most socioeconomically challenged communities. The overarching goal of Wake Moves Together is to provide a barrier free, active living program for all ages and capabilities. The initiative will focus on physical literacy providing information about the importance of remaining active. Staff will design and deliver programs that demonstrate fun, engaging, free or low cost activities that participants can easily replicate at home.  Programming kits will be developed ensuring sustainability for future programs and will be used as a training tool for library staff throughout WCPL.  A take-away resource guide will be created allowing attendees to continue activities at home.

Wayne County Public Library
Wish You Well

The Library will deliver a comprehensive wellness project with the goal of improving health outcomes for children ages 5-11 who are struggling with childhood obesity.  In Wayne County 33.7% of children ages 5-11 are overweight or obese.  15.9% of the children in this age group are considered obese. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity during childhood increases the likelihood of children developing serious health conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol, breathing problems and sleep apnea, joint problems and fatty liver diseases.   Additionally, children can experience psychological problems such as anxiety and depression, low self-worth, and can experience social problems such as bullying.  Wish You Well program participants will gain positive health benefits as they increase their knowledge and learn strategies to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen, the simplest way to prevent many chronic diseases.



The State Library of North Carolina proudly announces the SLNC CARES Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant awardees. The 39 awards, totaling nearly $870,000, support local library projects across North Carolina that target high need communities to address digital inclusion, expand digital network access, purchase internet accessible devices, and provide related technical support in response to the coronavirus.To see where awardees are located across the state, check out the SLNC CARES map

SLNC CARES grant awards are made possible by funding from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-246551-OLS-20). LSTA grants are awarded in response to specific needs of public, academic and community college libraries. These federal funds are investments that help libraries deliver relevant and up-to-date services to their communities.

Alamance County Public Libraries
Creating Connections                                                                      Award:  $10,000

Alamance County Public Libraries (ACPL) will be assisting in addressing the digital divide present in Alamance County.  20% of Alamance County citizens do not have the Internet in their homes. With home schooling and teleworking become almost mandatory during COVID, the deficit became an even larger issue.  By creating a circulating hotspot program, ACPL will be offering a free resource that will begin to address what is a much bigger issue in a county with an abundance of rural and low income communities that have access issues.

Appalachian Regional Library
ARL Digital Inclusion                                                                    Award:  $10,000

Appalachian Regional Library will use grant funding to purchase and provide to the residents of our three counties Chromebooks and hotspots so that they may access digital resources for vital information, job and career opportunities, educational resources, and reading material. We will also place hotspots at convenient locations in the counties to provide internet access to those without it at home. Our communities will benefit from the devices we provide as well as the instruction on their use.

Avery-Mitchell-Yancey Regional Library System
AMY Community Sync                                                                 Award:  $10,000

The pandemic is teaching us that internet is not a luxury, it is essential.  Funding for broadband access is increasing, but in some rural, mountain communities, the infrastructure is non-existent and the need is lost when the challenges are so extensive.  Isolated communities in rural WNC still exist.  A student completing schoolwork over a spotty internet connection or mobile hot spot is one of the most frustrating experiences.  A person needing medical care but unable to travel to the doctor needs another option, and the medical clinics here do connect over internet, but how does someone do that in a community without internet access? This project seeks to create an equitable way to reach these families.   We will outfit the bookmobile and 3 churches within the region, establish technology hubs, and teach digital literacy workshops, for those individuals who do not have internet access or come to library locations.  We will bring the library to the people.

Blue Ridge Community College
COVID-19 Laptop Access                                                                           Award:  $9,972

Blue Ridge Community College library aims to increase access to technology for its students as we transition to a hybrid-flexible (hy-flex) model of instruction this fall. Laptops with webcam and microphone access will be made available to students to use anywhere on campus as well as at home, to promote social distancing and work to eliminate barriers to technology. Because students will have the opportunity to use the laptops on campus or at home, we hope to reach more students with this model of lending. Campus wi-fi internet will be available to students who need it, and students with home internet service will be able to check out the devices for home use.


Buncombe County Public Libraries
Laptops and Hotspots 2 Go                                                                      Award:  $72,025

In partnership with Land of Sky Regional Council, the Buncombe County Public Library System aims to establish a laptop/hotspot lending program targeted to individuals with limited or no means to internet and computing technology due to financial or technological roadblocks.  Our goal, in the short term, is to lend households the mechanisms by which to connect to the internet and thereby access information on jobs and safety net benefits, attend telehealth appointments, complete school requirements, and connect to loved ones for extended periods of time and with more privacy than is typically afforded in a traditional library setting. In the long term, we expect the resonant effects of this equipment on individuals and families through potential employment gained, benefits and appointments accessed, and reduced social isolation could extend far beyond the granting period.

Cabarrus County Public Library
Internet for Students                                                                   Award:  $75,000

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted a disparity in the education of students with lower incomes, made clear through the lack of home internet access in a highly digitized world. In Kannapolis City Schools, it is estimated that 40% of students are currently without internet, while schools are expected to continue digital learning from home in some capacity during the 2020-2021 academic year. While Cabarrus County Public Library would normally open its doors to welcome students with both computer and internet access, the pandemic has also limited services that the library would normally provide, with facilities closed to the public for the foreseeable future. A partnership between these organizations to provide hot spots to students in need will aid in bridging the digital divide, and provide a measure of equity for students already facing academic disadvantages.

Campbell University Inc. / Wiggins Memorial Library
Commuter Engagement                                                             Award:  $10,000

Commuter students represent a particularly vulnerable population at Campbell University in a blended-learning and online-learning environment. Because of known issues with internet quality in Harnett County, Wiggins Library seeks to provide technology resources to assist with this rural and underrepresented University population. Some lack usable devices or reliable internet bandwidth. Often, such students use the library for study, but in 2020 the library is reducing occupancy due to COVID. In order to serve this population better, Campbell seeks funding for laptop devices and internet hotspots to be checked out by the library to local students in Harnett County.

Catawba College
Student Digital Access                                                                Award:  $10,000

Funding from this grant will benefit students at Catawba College during times of remote instruction and online learning due to COVID19 safety protocols. As a “BYOD” (Bring Your Own Device) institution and with 40% of our students Pell Grant eligible, librarians and professors discovered that as we transitioned to remote instruction via our learning management system, a large number of students were attempting to complete complex online assignments using their tablet or mobile device. We had tech support fielding calls from professors and students as the mobile devices did not have the computing capacity, storage capacity or accessibility to allow students to learn as effectively as they did in our traditional face-to-face environment.  We believe lifting the barriers of access to digital content by providing hardware (laptops) and connectivity (wifi hotspots) will enable our most challenged students to access the same educational opportunities as their peers.

Catawba County Library
Wi-Fi for All                                                                     Award:  $45,096

The Wi-Fi for All project will be a two pronged effort to decrease the gap in the digital divide by partnering with community organizations to establish spaces with free public access wireless Internet and to provide Internet enabled devices for individuals to borrow from the library. Focusing on expanding free access to broadband Internet on simple devices and at locations convenient to community members who cannot afford their own device or to have the Internet at home. It will benefit all Catawba County citizens including school children, those in the workforce, employers, and health care patients. As a result, more people in under-served neighborhoods will have critical access to the information highway, empowering them to make more informed decisions about their own situations and improve their opportunity to succeed in society.

Davidson County Public Library System
DCPL & DCS WiFi                                                                          Award:  $74,880

This project's goal is to provide Davidson County's K-12 students the ability to access the internet at home by checking out a WiFi hotspot from the Davidson County Public Library. This will be especially important during anticipated spikes in coronavirus cases in the fall when schools may revert to remote learning.

Durham Technical Community College Library
Tech and Tutoring                                                                        Award:  $10,000

At Durham Technical Community College, COVID-19 has exacerbated longstanding disparities between students. Durham Tech closed all its campuses on March 16th and the college's faculty and staff quickly learned students were in desperate need of technology like laptops.  Unable to visit the college’s libraries, the college’s computer labs, or public libraries, many of these students were keeping up with courses and completing assignments using only their smartphones. Faculty and staff have also noticed a digital literacy divide between economically insecure students and their better-resourced peers. With this grant, Durham Tech will bridge this divide by providing students with Chromebooks and digital literacy tutoring, thereby increasing the likelihood that these students will succeed in an online learning environment and an increasingly high-tech workplace. The two-part solution proposed in this application—providing computers to students and offering training that helps them make the best use of information and communication technologies—is the most direct and cost-effective way to meet students’ needs.

East Carolina University, Joyner Library
ECU: Learn at Home Kits                                                                           Award:  $9,416

Due to COVID-19, East Carolina University will be moving as many classes as possible online. Joyner Library is seeking funding to create “Learn At Home” kits that students who otherwise may not have the resources to effectively learn online at home can check out to help facilitate distance learning. Kits will include a MiFi wireless internet hotspot, a printer, a webcam, a dry-erase board and markers, a wi-fi extender to increase the signal range, and a tripod for the webcam. We also request funding for two UV sanitation wands to disinfect incoming equipment.


East Carolina University, Laupus Library
MEP Laptops Project                                                                   Award:  $74,996

Laupus Library will partner with faculty in Health Education and Promotion, North Carolina Migrant Education Program, NC Student Action with Farmworkers, and NC Department of Public Instruction to provide 100 laptops for middle and high school children of migrant farmworkers.  The project builds on previous NLM funded projects working with the same partners to achieve similar and complementary goals with migrant farmworkers in Eastern NC. Health information literacy and searching skills instruction will be provided to NC MEP staff, and as stand alone modules on the laptops.  A collection of health related resources will also be uploaded to the laptops from WilderNet.

Farmville Public Library
Student Hotspot Program                                                                         Award:  $9,996

To continue to bridge the digital divide within the Farmville community while also supporting the educational and technological needs of its student population, the Farmville Public Library will implement a student hotspot lending program. Due to the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, Farmville schools and Pitt County Schools are planning to continue utilizing online learning as a component to its students’ education, which presents barriers for students with unreliable Internet access at home. The lending program will encompass 28 circulating hotspots for students to use, which will coincide with the implementation of Pitt County Schools' new student laptop lending program that provides each student with their own laptop computer. Equipped with a wireless hotspot from the Library and a laptop computer from Pitt County Schools, students will have what they need to access the Library’s online educational resources, to complete and submit their schoolwork and college prep documents, and to communicate with their teachers and classmates using their laptops.

Fontana Regional Library
Parking Lot Wi-fi Extension                                                                       Award:  $9,629

Extending our existing public wi-fi signal to reach beyond our buildings, to our parking lots 24-hours a day, will be of immediate benefit to people who need to find an internet connection to complete work or school assignments, or attend online meetings. Our target audience for this project are those members of the community who are now having to work or go to school “at home” but lack internet connectivity there. While local school systems provide students with laptops and tablets for online activities, many families here in the mountains of western North Carolina do not have sufficient internet access, because it is unavailable, unaffordable, or unreliable. With many people still working from home, and with schools doing contingency planning for online learning for the fall, the need for public wi-fi access remains critical, even as library building capacity remains severely limited by the public health crisis.

Fontana Regional Library
Wi-fi Hotspots for Schools                                                                         Award:  $74,861

Collaborating with our local school systems, we propose providing 109 wi-fi hotspots for checkout by K-12 families identified by the schools as most in need of them for academic purposes. Local schools issue Chromebooks and tablets to students but are contending with the fact that many families do not have access to the internet at home, either because it is not available or is not affordable. More than 32.6% of households in our service area have no internet connection, which is double the statewide average. Our target audience will be students who have the greatest need for connectivity given the course of study prescribed by the school system for that age, and especially those families with multiple children whose coursework requires connectivity. This number of hotspots will not fully alleviate the need, but it will enable more families to have access at their homes and will complement other school connectivity initiatives.

Franklin County Public Library
Franklin County Hotspots                                                                          Award:  $9,690

The Franklin County Library is seeking funding through the SLNC Cares EZ Grant Program to provide access equity to the Internet in unserved and underserved communities throughout our County.We are seeking funds to deploy 19 mobile hotspots. This will provide opportunities to service patron information needs and acclimate citizens to the ease and benefits of connectivity.  The availability of Internet resources will enable economic and individual growth and development simply by enabling patrons to apply for jobs, train for them online and not incur out of pocket expenses, that being particularly important in the current economic environment.  Such an advantage will give our residents, regardless of where they live, the ability to compete  for quality employment.

Harold D Cooley Library
Cooley Goes Digital                                                                      Award:  $10,000

Harold D. Cooley Library is seeking to develop a program that will allow more patrons to have accessibility to portable  devices at the library for individual use to accommodate social distancing. The devices will help meet the needs of Nash County, and Town of Nashville residents. In addition, the library would like to have devices available for programming that will serve all patrons and allow them to attend a program while practicing social distancing inside and outside the library.

Haywood Community College Library
Access to Digital Tech                                                                 Award:  $9,843

The Haywood Community College library is requesting funding to purchase laptops, webcams, and headsets for students who do not have adequate access to the digital technology they need to complete their classes. In Fall Semester 2020, 90% of the college's classes will be either fully online or have a significant online component, and that is likely to remain the case for the foreseeable future. The library wants to provide the technology for as many of those students as possible.

Haywood County Public Library
Hotspot Lending                                                                           Award:  $3,630

The Haywood County Public Library will implement a mobile hotspot lending program to assist with bridging the digital divide and to promote digital literacy. Mobile hotspots connect with electronics such as laptops and tablets to provide broadband Internet service at any location within a service area. This project will benefit current and potential library users by providing Wi-Fi hotspots for over 30% of Haywood County’s population lacking high-speed connection to the internet, and would meet the following needs, which have become more pronounced as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic: students who cannot complete homework assignments, teachers who are conducting online teaching, the unemployed or under-employed looking for jobs, people applying for government and other services, and those who need to stay up to date on the current pandemic restrictions and health recommendations. The project’s user-focused goal is to increase digital equity in Haywood County.

Iredell County Public Library
Chromebooks To Go                                                                    Award:  $9,975

The Iredell County Public Library proposes to implement a new service – Chromebooks To Go. This new service will assist with bridging the digital divide. Chromebooks To Go will provide 26 Chromebooks available to our users to checkout for use outside of the library. The Chromebooks will be available at each location: 16 at the Statesville Library, 4 at the Harmony Library, and 6 at the Troutman Library.  The grant will allow the library to offer access outside of the library for the first time with the intention of supporting workforce development and closing the homework gap. The Iredell County Public Library will acquire 11 hot spots through TechSoup to enhance this program. Users may checkout a Chromebook, a hot spot, or both.

Lees-McRae College
Access in Appalachia                                                                   Award:  $9,500

Lees-McRae College upholds its history as a school of opportunity by continuing to make the small college experience accessible to students from lower income families. In accordance with this, the library must often strive to support students with the necessary tools to excel in the classroom. The library is limited in that mission by the current circulating laptops which are owned by the office of technology services and are limited by short, in-library circulation. This project would allow the library to purchase necessary educational technology including laptops and webcams for longer term circulation among students in need. These items would provide significant support to student success in their classes as classwork takes place increasingly online and is increasingly dependent on access to technology.

Lenoir Community College
Laptops and Lectures                                                                  Award:  $10,000

Lenoir Community College Library aids in serving more than 3,700 students in three rural Eastern North Carolina counties where access to technological tools are scarce. Through the Laptops and Lectures Project, the LCC Library will purchase six laptops, and with the assistance of Student Services, will identify eligible students in synchronous and/or online learning courses for the 2020-2021 academic year. Eligible students will be ones without access to the internet or a computer at home. These high-need students will benefit from the free rental of a laptop and the use of a college funded hotspot. With the use of a laptop and hotspot while at home, the student will be able to participate in online learning instruction, e-textbook reading and computer-based assignments. This allows for successful completion of online courses during a global pandemic without the strain of a technological disadvantage.

Lincoln County Public Library
All Around Access                                                                        Award:  $30,005

The Lincoln County Public Library will partner with NCWorks of Lincoln County and will purchase Chromebooks and WiFi hot-spots as well as portable tables,chairs, and a wireless printer to create a mobile job seeking lab.  The lab will be set up in areas around the county that have little to no access to internet services to allow those in need to create resumes and apply for jobs with the expertise of NCWorks staff.  The lab will allow for set up in a safe socially distanced manner to comply with government orders.  The purpose of this project is to combat the rising unemployment rate and help businesses find the employees they need during the COVID-19 crisis.

Mitchell Community College/Huskins Library
Tech for Success                                                                           Award:  $9,730

Huskins Library at Mitchell Community College will lend laptops and computer accessories to high need students who cannot purchase computers to complete coursework online as the college continues to face the COVID-19 pandemic. This need was identified as the campus abruptly moved courses online and many students requested formal assistance to obtain computers. None of the departments on campus, including the library, were equipped to meet this need. By lending laptops, Huskins Library aims to help the college reduce the number of students withdrawing or taking incomplete grades because they cannot complete all coursework due to a lack of technology at home.  The ultimate goal is for the students who borrow laptops to complete all of their courses during the upcoming academic year.

Piedmont Community College
PCC’s Technology Bridge                                                                           Award:  $9,728

PCC will purchase computer equipment and-Fi hotspot devices which we can loan to students to bridge the gap between students who do not have technology access and students who do. Our goal is for students to gain access to technology that will support them as they continue their research and other coursework. With the purchase of computer equipment and Wi-Fi hotspot devices, students will be able to successfully: access their courses from home to complete their assignments, attend Zoom or Microsoft Teams meetings, and complete their courses with acceptable grades.

Pitt Community College Library
PCC Digital Divide                                                                        Award:  $10,000

Due to the COVID-19 Health Crisis, Pitt Community College (PCC) transitioned to online courses in mid-March 2020 which highlighted the digital divide among PCC students.  The conversion to online learning presented a challenge for students with no access to computers. The goal for this project is to purchase laptops for student use which will allow them access to technology and student support services needed to complete course work.

Public Library of Johnston County and Smithfield
Workforce Development                                                                           Award:  $7,650

The Public Library of Johnston County and Smithfield is committed to addressing the workforce needs of Johnston County. In collaboration with Workforce Development, the library will provide digital literacy workshops to meet the needs of the community seeking employment. Laptops with software will be purchased along with storage carts for training community members and patrons.

Randolph County Public Library
Virtual Early Learning                                                                 Award:  $8,080

The Randolph County Public Library will provide 20 iPads to its Parents as Teachers (PAT) program for loan to families in the program who lack adequate means of participating in virtual home visits and family group meetings, and who are unable to effectively access library digital media resources. The PAT program places parent educators (PAT coordinators) in the homes of families where pre-school children are at risk, due to economic and other factors, of being unprepared to succeed when they start school. Two PAT coordinators serve 42 families. When the coordinators pivoted to virtual home visits at the start of the pandemic, it became apparent that half the families were only able to participate via cell phone. With iPads, parents will be better able to learn during virtual visits and group meetings, increasing their knowledge of early childhood development and parenting skills; and better able to access library early learning resources, such as the NC KIDS Digital Library.

Roanoke-Chowan Community College Learning Resources Center
Fast Forward Tech                                                                       Award:  $62,843

In our rural area, many of the population we serve have challenges in access to Internet, funds for equipment and simple digital and academic skills to build confidence in being workforce ready and able to thrive in a 21st century technologically driven society.  With unemployment skyrocketing due to COVID19, patrons have need to update technical and academic portfolios for future employment opportunities. Our Fast Forward Tech grant proposal meets not only the needs of 80 people belonging to this digitally challenged and possibly unemployed population, but it also has a built in plan for replication to touch 400+ people over a five year span.

Rockingham Community College James Library
Broadband Access                                                                       Award:  $9,690

We propose providing broadband service to 25 community college students for a period of 10 months, including Fall 2020, Spring 2021, and Summer 2021 semesters.  Students will be chosen based on need, as determined by FAFSA data. The goal is to support academic success in online classes for students who cannot afford internet access in their homes. Rockingham County is a high need community with 17.37% of households below the poverty level and 31.1% of households currently without internet access. Success of the project will be measured by the academic success of the participants as tracked over the 10 month period.

Rockingham County Public Library
RCPL Tech-Connect                                                                      Award:  $9,996

Rockingham County has an increased need for internet access and technology.  With unemployment rates still rising, the necessity for access to technology is growing.  Solutions have been made to meet the needs of the community.  Some of these include increasing Wi-Fi access in and around the building, purchasing technology that engages children and teens in learning, and purchasing equipment to help increase the safety during Covid-19.  Each solution has been chosen as a specific, yet definitive way, to increase not only internet access but also literacy in Rockingham County. 

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College
Mobile Hotspot Lending Program                                                                          Award:  $10,000

The Mobile Hotspot Lending Program will benefit students with little to no access to Wi-Fi connectivity either due to location or the cost of service.  Before the Covid-19 crisis, over 35% of Rowan-Cabarrus students solely attended the Colleges virtual campus meaning all of their instruction was conducted online via various internet-connected platforms.  For these students, a reliable internet connection is crucial to success.  Then, in March 2020, all Rowan-Cabarrus CC courses were transitioned to an online format in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.  To address the needs mentioned above, the College would like to launch a pilot program that lends mobile hotspot devices to qualifying students.    The Goal of the Mobile Hotspot Lending Program is to bridge the digital divide by removing accessibility and affordability barriers for students and allowing them access to reliable internet service that is essential in meeting their educational goals.

Sandhills Community College
Expanding Library WIFI Access                                                                Award:  $10,000

Sandhills Community College’s Katharine Boyd Library serves a community comprised of students, faculty, staff and non-student library patrons who reside in Moore and Hoke counties. Conversely, many residents of these counties suffered layoffs and job loss due to the recent COVID 19 outbreak.  Although most libraries closed in response to this situation, Boyd Library remains open to extend a crucial lifeline for those who need library services, especially internet and WIFI access. These factors, coupled with the shift to online-only classes for students have made internet access a priority that adversely affects members of our community, as many cannot afford to purchase their own access.  These outside access points will also support current and future social distancing practices and allow swift reaction to future outbreaks.

Sheppard Memorial Library
Covid19 Digital Bridge                                                                Award:  $9,799

Many of the people of Greenville and Pitt County, North Carolina represent a high-need population lacking sufficient access to computers and internet connectivity, which are both vital in order to survive and thrive not just in the information age and in a knowledge-based economy, but even more so now during the Covid19 pandemic.  Pre-Covid19, the people of Greenville and Pitt County made great use of the library’s computing and internet resources.    However, as measures have been undertaken at the library to keep everyone safe and flatten the curve, and high-risk individuals have sheltered at home during the pandemic, many people have lost access to vital computing and internet resources that they have usually received at their public library.  The people of Greenville and Pitt County need Sheppard Memorial Library to bridge the digital divide for them in new ways, by providing wifi in the library’s parking lots and purchasing Chromebooks for our patrons to check out.

Stanly Community College Library
Stanly CC Library Cares!                                                             Award:  $10,000

A high poverty rate coupled with a high percentage of homes without internet in Stanly County means that internet is difficult to monetarily prioritize for many families, especially due to the staggeringly high unemployment rate in the county. By providing Wi-Fi hotspots to students in need, the SCC Library stands the chance of helping to close the broadband divide for our students and alleviate monetary burdens for our community, even if it is for a short while. Also, cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in Stanly County. Offering hotspots to students will also help to alleviate students being exposed to the virus.

Wake Technical Community College Library Services
Increasing Digital Equity...                                                                        Award:  $73,325

Wake Technical Community College’s (Wake Tech’s) Library Services division proposes to increase digital literacy and access among new community borrowers in underserved eastern Wake County. With the help of our project partners, we will identify households with limited access to internet, technology, and the digital literacy skills to use it.  We will provide long-term loans of digital toolkits (includes a laptop, printer, and hotspot with mobile broadband access), provide digital literacy and other training in online or seated formats, and strengthen our presence in the community to lay the groundwork for the future campus presence in eastern Wake County. Our project, entitled Increasing Digital Equity through Digital Inclusion Pilot, includes activities, goals, and outcomes that align with the State Library of North Carolina’s five year plan goals of Strengthening Capacity, Expanding Access, and Community Engagement.

Wayne County Public Library
Project Click!                                                                  Award:  $10,000

Project Click! will provide education opportunities, digital tools and resources, and space for exploration, innovation, and imaginative risk taking to aspiring entrepreneurs interested in using online marketplaces and e-commerce sites in their business model.  The library will host virtual trainings on a variety of related topics including the Ice House Entrepreneurship Program, finance, basic business planning, e-commerce content and copy writing, marketing, and product photography.  Tutorials will be created to demonstrate how to use e-commerce, online marketplace, and marketing platforms. These trainings and tutorials will be recorded and made available, along with small meeting space, at all library locations for patrons without broadband.  The project will also offer digital subscriptions and traditional library resources on topics related to e-commerce, small business, and online sales.

Wilkes Community College Pardue Library
Expanding Wi-Fi Access to Pardue                                                                         Award:  $9,714

Pardue Library will use the funds from this grant to purchase enough Wi-Fi antennas to completely cover the second floor of Alumni Hall (Pardue Library) and to purchase two external antennas to cover the Library parking lot. This project was selected because students are currently unable to access Wi-Fi in the Library’s periodical reading area and three of the study rooms and no access is available outside the building. Library closure related to COVID-19 revealed how much students rely on the Library for Wi-Fi access, highlighting the need for parking lot Wi-Fi access.

LSTA grant awards are made possible by funding from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (IMLS grant number LS-246155-OLS-20). LSTA grants are awarded in response to specific needs of public, academic and community college libraries. These federal funds are investments that help libraries deliver relevant and up-to-date services to their communities.