ELF 2.0 logo
A Resource for Libraries

Find us on ELF2.0 Pinterest account ELF2.0 Youtube account ELF2.0 Facebook account ELF2.0 Twitter account

Kids and their parents at the library Parents playing peek-a-boo A parent reading a book with a child Kid playing at the library

Community Collaborations

Libraries have long recognized the importance of establishing partnerships to address gaps in early learning service provision and programs. They work with schools, extended day and early learning programs, and childcare providers. They also partner with family health centers and home visiting programs, as well as public housing authorities, municipal governments, corporations, universities, and local public broadcasting stations.

As a result of these local collaborations, libraries have been able to expand their services, strengthen their available expertise, enhance outreach to families, and increase their visibility in the community as resources for early learning. For example:

  • Specialists in child development, health, early education and/or parenting, provided by community partners, offer workshops and programs at libraries.
  • Many early childhood agencies provide valuable educational materials for both families and library staff at little or no cost.
  • Community partners help promote library programs and services, enabling libraries to reach a broader and more diverse population of families – including connections with hard to reach families who may not be typical library users.
  • Partner agencies advocate for libraries as early learning community resources.
  • Inter-agency collaborations help secure additional funding and improve the impact of funded grants.

In turn, libraries guide and assist their partners by providing access to early learning materials and helping them incorporate early literacy practices into their agencies' services for young children – thereby strengthening the likelihood that families will embrace these practices.

Most importantly, however, when libraries partner to address service gaps and create effective early learning experiences that promote a smooth transition into preschool and kindergarten, libraries are helping to assure the future success of the young children they serve!

Hear what one local community partner has to say about their library partnership:

VIDEO: ELF 2.0 Kathleen Guerrero, First 5 El Dorado Children and Families Commission (5:26)