$10,000 Grant Will Help the Library Work with Residents with Disabilities to better access library services

WILTON PUBLIC LIBRARY has been selected as one of 240 libraries to participate in Libraries Transforming Communities: Accessible Small and Rural Communities, an American Library Association (ALA) initiative that provides community engagement and accessibility resources to small and rural libraries to help them better serve people with disabilities.

The competitive award comes with a $10,000 grant that will help the library increase services to community members who have mobility challenges and/or vision issues.  Plans include increasing large print and digital materials, as well as programming that travels to locations outside the library to facilitate access.

“We are so proud and excited to be chosen for this amazing opportunity,” said Library Director Kristi Hager. “This grant will help us improve our services to ensure this population feels welcome and comfortable using library services both in and out of the library building.”

As part of the grant, Wilton Public Library staff will take an online course in how to lead conversations, a skill vital to library work today. Staff will then host a conversation with community residents about existing challenges, seeking community input on what services and access the library can incorporate into their planning, and use the grant funds to provide training and access to digital and print materials.

The Wilton Public Library aims to be a place where all community members can access information and entertainment.  Increasing the variety of materials in the collection, providing access to digital resources, bringing programs to other locations in the community outside of the library building, and developing a home-delivery system will allow those who may not have time or feel comfortable traveling to the library to partake of library-provided services.

If you are interested in getting involved or taking part in the conversation, please contact Kristi Hager at 563-732-2583 or khager@wiltoniowa.org, or visit https://www.wilton.lib.ia.us/ for more information.

Since 2014, ALA’s Libraries Transforming Communities initiative has re-imagined the role libraries play in supporting communities. Libraries of all types have utilized free dialogue and deliberation training and resources to lead community and campus forums; take part in anti-violence activities; provide a space for residents to come together and discuss challenging topics; and have productive conversations with civic leaders, library trustees and staff.


“Libraries Transforming Communities: Accessible Small and Rural Communities is an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) in collaboration with the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL).”