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Libraries launch Homecoming reading promotion

Thursday 26 March 2009

An innovative scheme to attract new readers was today launched by Scottish libraries. As part of the Homecoming Bookshare, a selection of Scottish titles will be released at locations across Scotland, like railway stations, airports and ferry terminals, and readers can then log their finds on the Scottish Readers website.

The scheme is already operational in East Dunbartonshire, where books have been placed at five train stations as well as a range of hotels and restaurants.

The Bookshare forms part of Scotland’s Homecoming reading promotion, Reading Roots, which was launched by Councillor Deidre Brock, Convenor of the Culture and Leisure Committee at City of Edinburgh Council, at Edinburgh’s McDonald Road Library on Thursday 26 March.

Reading Roots is supported by the Scottish Government through its Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF) and has been developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals in Scotland (CILIPS), with the participation of all Scottish local authorities.

As part of the initiative, the Scottish Readers website has been re-designed with a dedicated Reading Roots area, focusing on Scottish themes and featuring a call for readers to ‘Get involved’ by submitting their choice of a book that best sums up Scotland.

The website features over 300 Scottish titles across 14 reading lists, which are drawn from a broad range of themes - from Scotland’s landscape to crimes and criminals. Nearly 60% of the books on the list come from Scottish Publishers.

Libraries will display quality promotional material, including 12 Robert Burns poetry posters, as well as a number of new, community-based collections. Libraries will also be running local promotional events and updated web resources will be added to the Scottish Readers website.

Elaine Fulton, Director of SLIC, said: “Libraries have been ‘recycling’ reading for over 150 years. Our key activities are based on principles of sharing and co-operating with other library services to ensure that the public has access to a wide range of reading materials. Scottish authors are very popular with the public who are always delighted to find new or overlooked authors, as well as enjoying their favourites.”

Christine May, former MSP and Chair of SLIC, said: “The new feature on the website are a welcome and imaginative addition for readers in Scotland and those involved are to be commended for its development. Readers will have great fun using it to find books that interest them.”

Contact: Rhona Arthur, Assistant Director, SLIC Tel: 01689 458888 Mob: 07778 285659

Notes for editors:

SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters. SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and the National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance. SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

CILIPS

CILIPS is the Scottish arm of the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals, the professional body for librarians and information professionals in the UK. Formed in 2002 by the amalgamation of the Library Association and the Institute of Information Scientists, CILIPS undertakes the representation of CILIP in the Scottish context and works on behalf of Scottish members to improve and support Scottish library and information services.

PLQIF

The PLQIF was launched by the Scottish Executive in 2006/07 to support the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM), a quality assurance and performance monitoring framework for public libraries. PLQIM was developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Scottish Executive. PLQIF financial support is awarded by SLIC on an annual basis to assist public library services in the implementation of PLQIM.

Library petition submitted to Scottish Parliament

Thursday 18 December

A petition urging the Scottish Government to ensure continued provision of local libraries and the vital social and educational role they serve within communities was presented at the Scottish Parliament Public Petitions Committee meeting on Tuesday 16th December.

The petition (PE 1148) was lodged by Sam Coulter of Erskine Community Council following the closure of four small service points in Renfrewshire Council last year.

The Committee also received supporting submissions from the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) and the Scottish Government, as well as East Dunbartonshire, East Lothian, Glasgow City and Shetland Isles Council.

Committee Convener, Frank McAveety MSP for Glasgow Shettleston, commented that libraries were a matter for local authorities but that there were some issues concerning how libraries should be embedded in Single Outcome Agreements.

In closing the petition, Bill Butler MSP for Glasgow Anniesland, called on the Committee to write to the Scottish Government and ask that they continue to work with SLIC and COSLA to ensure the future of public library services in Scotland in the current financial climate.

SLIC is the advisory body to the Scottish Government and also administers the Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF) and performance monitoring framework on the Government’s behalf.

Following on from the Parliamentary Petition, SLIC has published the summary reports from nine local authority library service’s supported self evaluation programme, which were carried out through 2007/8.

By Using the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix, library services have been able to demonstrate that they are fulfilling their legal requirement to deliver an adequate service.

SLIC Director, Elaine Fulton, said: “The continuation of PLQIM funding has been a welcome cash injection to support the innovation and development inherent in a healthy, forward-looking library service. However, there are currently some concerns that local authorities will have severe financial pressures that may impact on the quality of services.”

The PLQIM reports demonstrate how well-supported library services can be developed, encouraging staff and communities to shape the services to cater for users from a range of backgrounds, as evidenced by the Libraries4U programme in Edinburgh and work with Visually Impaired and Housebound in East Dunbartonshire. There is also evidence of users informing renovation and development work.

Libraries are working collaboratively to share information, resources and best practice through joint procurement and purchasing arrangements, developing shared services and increasingly offering online services to users outside of traditional library buildings.

Christine May, former MSP for Central Fife and Chair of SLIC, commented: ”Although the reports present largely good news, this is not a time for complacency for local authorities or librarians themselves. Recent surveys and feedback have demonstrated that the library service is a valued community service which supports reading, information and learning. SLIC is pleased to have developed a toolkit which helps services demonstrate this important work and not just the number of books issued.”

Notes to editors

About SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters. SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and The National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance.

Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF)

The PLQIF was launched by the Scottish Executive in 2006/07 to support the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM), a quality assurance and performance monitoring framework for public libraries.  PLQIM was developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Scottish Executive.  PLQIF financial support is awarded by SLIC on an annual basis to assist public library services in the implementation of PLQIM.

All library services within Scotland’s 32 local authorities are eligible to apply to SLIC for funding. Applications for funding are made by individual local authorities based on needs and priorities at a local level. 

Minister launches family history scheme in Scottish libraries

For release: Friday 28 November 2008

A new initiative aimed at widening access to online genealogy information through Scottish libraries was today launched by Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, Linda Fabiani, at Edinburgh’s recently refurbished Stockbridge Library.

ScotlandsPeople is the official Government web source of family history information in Scotland, usually accessed on a pay per view basis requiring a debit or credit card transaction.

The programme in public libraries is designed to overcome social and technological barriers to accessing information, allowing more people to uncover their Scottish roots by providing support and training in the use of the Internet and ScotlandsPeople in combination with additional material from local collections.

Under this national scheme, vouchers will be available from public libraries giving library users throughout Scotland the opportunity to access the website at a significantly reduced cost.

ScotlandsPeople offers extensive family history information, including digital images of Scottish records of births and marriages dating back to 1553, deaths from 1855, the open census records from 1841 to 1901, wills and testaments from 1513 to 1901 and Coats of Arms from 1672 to 1907.

The website is a partnership between the General Register Office for Scotland, the National Archives of Scotland and the Court of the Lord Lyon.

Ms Fabiani said: “The ScotlandsPeople partner organisations have worked closely with the Scottish Libraries Information Council and Local Authorities to ensure this great facility is available in public libraries throughout Scotland.

It will give people with an interest in their family history, but who may not have easy access to a computer, the opportunity to use the best family history website in the world. Easier access to this information will allow more Scots to understand who they are and where they come from.

Homecoming Scotland 2009 celebrates our rich cultural identity and Scots’ contributions to the world. As the celebrations continue throughout next year, more and more Scots will be visiting their local libraries to take advantage of this invaluable resource.”

SLIC Director, Elaine Fulton, said: “Supporting family or local history research and helping people to use computers and online resources are important roles for public library services in Scotland. We are delighted that libraries’ role in this process has now be extended through the discounted voucher scheme.

As we approach the first ever year of Homecoming in 2009, we expect an even greater demand for genealogical and local history information, as people explore and celebrate their Scottish ancestry and heritage. Scottish libraries, through SLIC, look forward to being able to support this through ScotlandsPeople and other planned projects."

The ScotlandsPeople vouchers are on sale in public libraries now at a cost of £6 for 60 access credits, double the credits offered online for the same price. The vouchers can be used in libraries or at any location with Internet access.

Stockbridge Library re-opened on Thursday 31st July following a £400,000 refurbishment programme.

Contact: Elaine Fulton, SLIC tel: 01698 458888 mob: 07831353283

Notes to editors

About SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters. SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and The National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance.

About GROS

The General Register Office for Scotland is an Associated Department of the Scottish Government and is headed by the Registrar General for Scotland. One of its primary functions is to make its genealogical information available to the public worldwide.

About NAS

The National Archives of Scotland (NAS), select, preserve, and make available the national archives of Scotland in whatever medium, to the highest standards; to promote the growth and maintenance of proper archive provision throughout the country; and to lead the development of archival practice in Scotland. NAS is an Associated Department of the Scottish Government headed by the Keeper of the Records of Scotland.

About CLL

The Court of the Lord Lyon is the heraldic authority for Scotland and deals with all matters relating to Scottish Heraldry and Coats of Arms and maintains the Scottish Public Registers of Arms and Genealogies. It is headed by the Lord Lyon King of Arms and is also responsible for State Ceremonial in Scotland.

Government awards library funding

Friday 7th November 2008

Ten projects aimed at improving the quality and diversity of Scotland’s public library services have been awarded £450,000 from the Scottish Government.

The funding, from the Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF), will support selected libraries in introducing new hi-tech services such as laptop loans, wireless internet access and self-issue machines for public use.

Other successful bids target meeting the needs of specific user groups such as those with disabilities or long term medical conditions and young people.

In East Dunbartonshire, funding will even lead to the creation of a mobile classroom which will be used to combat digital exclusion among cared for people and their carers.

The PLQIF is administered by the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC), the advisory body to Scottish Ministers on library and information matters, and is in its third round.

SLIC Director, Elaine Fulton, said: “We are delighted that the Scottish Government is continuing to support public libraries through this successful programme. Many of the projects build on work SLIC has been doing with local authorities to evaluate and improve their services.

These initiatives not only show the breadth of work undertaken within modern library services in Scotland, but also demonstrate the significant contribution libraries can make in terms of meeting local and national objectives."

The Scottish Government has provided £1.35M through the PLQIF to date, funding projects in 27 local authorities as well as two national initiatives. This Fund will be continued for the next 3 years.

The successful awards totalling £450,000 include:

East Dunbartonshire: Awarded £24,340
This project will offer library support to lessen digital exclusion among carers and the cared for through the provision of a mobile classroom and access to specially designed courses. A small research project into the impact of this initiative has also been funded.
East Lothian: Awarded £45,865
The project will establish self-issue machines in libraries and free up staff time for reader development and support for development of online services.
Edinburgh Awarded: £51,900
Building on last year’s Libraries4YOU, Tales of the City will promote positive engagement with 10-19 year olds, using different forms of art to help them to tell their story.
Highland: Awarded £24,166
Bringing together two previous funded projects to develop community information and community engagement (award subject to clarification of terms).
Perth and Kinross: Awarded £38,000
This project will provide improved health information services to public and mobile libraries.
Scottish Borders: Awarded £17,000
This project will provide improved health information services to those suffering from long term medical conditions. The project will also provide additional resources for children and young people.
Shetland: Awarded £17,200
Building on the 2007 project for groups at risk from exclusion, this project improves physical and technical access to electronic resources for people with disabilities.
South Lanarkshire: Awarded £33,000
To improve access by introducing wireless internet connectivity and widen opportunities to participate in learning.
Stirling: Awarded £66,750
Building on previous projects, this initiative seeks to enhance accessibility and improve the infrastructure in Stirling which supports learning. This project will draw on learning taster sessions developed by Fife Council in a previous project. A small research project into the impact of this initiative has also been funded.
West Dunbartonshire: Awarded £45,665
This project aims to tackles digital inclusion by installing wireless Internet connections in 40% of community libraries and provide a laptop for loan scheme.
National shared project: Awarded £76,114
A national project exploring a national approach to virtual reference services for Scotland.

In addition, £10,000 will be used for research into the impact on the public of earlier projects funded in the 2006/7 and 2007/8.

Contact: Elaine Fulton, Director t: 01698 458888 e: e.fulton@slainte.org.uk

Notes

Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF)

The PLQIF was launched by the Scottish Executive in 2006/07 to support the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM), a quality assurance and performance monitoring framework for public libraries.  PLQIM was developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Scottish Executive.  PLQIF financial support is awarded by SLIC on an annual basis to assist public library services in the implementation of PLQIM.

All library services within Scotland’s 32 local authorities are eligible to apply to SLIC for funding. Applications for funding are made by individual local authorities based on needs and priorities at a local level. 

About SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters.  SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and the National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance.  SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

Libraries top culture poll

25 September 2008

A recent Scottish Government survey has found that libraries are the most frequently attended cultural venue in the country, with almost one third of adults reporting visits to libraries in the last 12 months.

The Scottish Household Survey also found that reading continues to be the most popular cultural activity in Scotland, attracting 64% of the adult population.  This is almost three times higher than dance which was in second place with a 22% participation rate.  Other activities such as playing an instrument (10%) and photography (8%) were significantly less favoured by Scots.

The Scottish Household Survey is designed to provide information about the behaviour of Scottish households and individuals on a range of issues.  A more detailed report on the Culture and Sport Module of the survey will be published by the Scottish Government in late October 2008.

Commenting on the survey, Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) Director, Elaine Fulton, said: “I am delighted that libraries continue to attract public support, however, this does not surprise me given the innovative approach to service development within the library sector. 

SLIC has engaged with public libraries across the country through the Scottish Government’s Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF).  This has enabled us to demonstrate the impact that libraries have on people’s lives and the change they can effect in communities.”

PLQIF was introduced by the Scottish Executive in 2006 to support the implementation of a quality improvement framework for public libraries.  SLIC has just published an impact study on the first round of PLQIF projects and is planning to commission further work in this area.

Linda Fabiani, Minister for Europe, External Affairs and Culture, has welcomed the SLIC impact study: “I am glad to see that many local authorities have been engaging with the public libraries agenda and bringing forward new ideas about how to re-invigorate and modernise the service. 

Scottish Library and Information Council is a strong supporter of this activity with financial help from the Scottish Government.  I welcome this report which highlights the impact of innovative projects and shows the value of local libraries in promoting employment skills, computer skills and promoting reading to provide a lifetime of benefit to people in Scotland.” 

PLQIF continues to be supported by the Scottish Government and SLIC is currently assessing a new batch of funding applications.

Contact: Elaine Fulton, Director t: 01698 458888 e: e.fulton@slainte.org.uk

Notes

(1)Scottish Household Survey

All Statistics are taken from the Results from the 2007 Scottish Household Survey which was published by the Scottish Government in August 2008.  An abridged Culture & Sport section is also available.

(2)Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF)

The PLQIF was launched by the Scottish Executive in 2006/07 to support the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM), a quality assurance and performance monitoring framework for public libraries.  PLQIM was developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Scottish Executive.  PLQIF financial support is awarded by SLIC on an annual basis to assist public library services in the implementation of PLQIM.

About SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters.  SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and the National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance.  SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

Books still top for teens

12 September 2008

Book borrowing is the main reason for public library visits by young people according to a survey commissioned by the Scottish Government.

Scotland’s Schools Omnibus, an annual survey of secondary school pupils carried out by Ipsos MORI, found that 67% of young people visited their local library to borrow, return or renew books.  This is significantly higher than the numbers using computers and the Internet (37%) or borrowing multimedia materials (10%).

A substantial number (16%) of the 11-15 year-olds surveyed also selected browsing or reading as the motivation for their library visits.

Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) Director, Elaine Fulton, said: “These findings reaffirm the value of public libraries in supporting reading for pleasure and nurturing the reading habit in Scotland’s young people.

The significant role libraries play in young people’s lives has been recognised by the Scottish Government through its financial support of innovative projects, such as Edinburgh’s Libraries4U scheme.”

Libraries4U received Public Library Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF) support in order to revamp three city libraries, installing newly stocked Teenage Zones that were designed in consultation with young library users.

The initiative was launched at Craigmillar, Kirkliston and Moredun, offering young people the opportunity to actively engage with the libraries through a diverse programme of events and activities.

Angela Leitch, Head of Performance and Community Engagement at Edinburgh City Libraries said: “The success of Libraries4U has been demonstrated by increased teenage borrowing as a result of improved stock chosen for and by young people. Additionally the number of young people participating in library events and activities has doubled, with over 1,500 engaging with the project.

Our experience supports the findings of the Government’s survey and highlights the importance of books and reading to young people.”

The Scottish Government has published full details of the survey in their online report Children’s Participation in Culture and Sport.

Contact: Elaine Fulton, Director t: 01698 458888 e: e.fulton@slainte.org.uk

Notes

(1)Scotland’s Schools Omnibus

The survey is designed to complement findings on adult participation in culture and sport from the Scottish Household Survey (SHS).  The Scottish Government commissioned Ipsos MORI to conduct research among young people in Scotland using Ipsos MORI Scotland’s Schools Omnibus, an annual survey of secondary school pupils.

(2)Children’s Participation in Culture and Sport

The findings of Scotland’s Schools Omnibus have been used to form the Scottish Government report Children’s Participation in Culture and Sport, which was published on 09/09/2008. Full report available: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2008/08/12161748/0. Cultural section available: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2008/08/12161748/3.

(3) Public Libraries Quality Improvement Fund (PLQIF)

The PLQIF was launched by the Scottish Executive in 2006/07 to support the Public Library Quality Improvement Matrix (PLQIM), a quality assurance and performance monitoring framework for public libraries.  PLQIM was developed by SLIC in collaboration with the Scottish Executive.  PLQIF financial support is awarded by SLIC on an annual basis to assist public library services in the implementation of PLQIM.

(4) Libraries4U

More information at: http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/internet/leisure/libraries/explore_your_library/teenagers/cec_libraries4u.

About SLIC

The Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC) is the independent advisory body to the Scottish Government on library and information matters.  SLIC was established in 1991 and is funded by organisational membership subscriptions. The Scottish Government partially funds the Council in its work and the National Library of Scotland also contributes financial assistance.  SLIC members include all local authority, higher education and further education institutions, NHS Trust library services and other specialist library and information organisations.

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