KCLS forges partnerships for broader public benefit

The King County Library System strives to create meaningful partnerships with other public agencies, private businesses, and nonprofits organizations to better serve our shared communities.

Partnerships expand KCLS’ reach by making it possible for the Library System to serve a broader range of people, while stretching tax dollars. We team with social service organizations for Summer Meals and to assist those experiencing homelessness. We collaborate with AARP and other agencies for senior programs and services. We also work with the U.S. Census Bureau to promote education in anticipation of the upcoming 2020 census.

One of my favorite examples of strong partnership is Community Court, a collaboration with the city of Redmond and King County District Court. Community Court identifies and addresses the underlying challenges faced by those who appear in a traditional court by providing alternatives to sentencing and jail time, such as community service or paying restitution. Community Court is held at Redmond Library, offering social services and workforce resources to help non-violent offenders turn around their lives. The program helps build stronger and safer neighborhoods by reducing recidivism and reduces the burden on taxpayers by lowering jail costs. Since its debut last April, there have been 120 Community Court participants and a total 61 graduates.

In anticipation of upcoming elections, King County Elections has voter accessibility sites throughout the county, including locations at KCLS libraries. Working in partnership with King County Elections, KCLS also offers programs like “How to Run for Office” and “Elections 101,” and voters will find ballot drop boxes at 18 of our libraries. During the November 2018 election, King County Elections reported that 23.11 percent of all ballots were dropped in a box at a KCLS library.

Local food banks and other health and human service organizations, such as United Way and AmeriCorps, support KCLS’ annual Summer Meals program. Last year, 10,321 nutritious meals were served, meeting a critical need for students while they are out of school.

In partnership with the Washington State Department of Social and Human Services (DSHS), KCLS delivers educational outreach programs to youth at Echo Glen Children’s Center for Juvenile Rehabilitation. Recently, middle and high school students from Echo Glen explored new worlds in virtual reality during workshops facilitated by faculty and students from the University of Washington Information School. Inspired by the workshops, KCLS worked with the iSchool to host an impressive exhibit of the students’ work at the Snoqualmie Library, which showcased their newly-honed digital media and storytelling skills.

As a patron, we hope you experience the impact of these partnerships with each library visit, and by checking out the events and programs on our website at kcls.org.

Lisa Rosenblum is executive director of the King County Library System.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@kentreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.kentreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Opinion

Back to the wild — a whole new outdoor recreation world | Guest editorial

When enjoying the great outdoors, continue to socially distance and be aware of how else COVID-19 has changed our world.

KCLS is stepping up its commitment to patrons

KCLS has expanding its online resources so patrons can continue to learn, build skills, stay entertained and remain mentally and physically active amid the pandemic.

How using a face mask to cover my Asian face could put me in danger

Since the COVID-19 outbreak began, Asians and Asian Americans have been targeted.

Opinion: Public deserves honest information on sex education

The Washington comprehensive sex education bill passed in the Senate on March 7.

Grocery store staff are working hard to keep the shelves stocked during the COVID-19 pandemic. File photo
Thank you grocery store clerks

Recognizing the sacrifices of our unsung essential workforce.

Helping community organizations as we respond to the coronavirus

Now, more than ever, nonprofits need gifts of time and money

TP shortage is tip of iceberg

Whether it be supplies of daily necessities, medicines or protective clothing, we need to have to patience, understanding and a desire to work together.

To our elected officials: Be bold, be consistent, be honest, be helpful

By Patrick Grubb, Washington Newspaper Publishers Association Governor Jay Inslee has been… Continue reading

Coronavirus testing telecommuting effectiveness

Employers offering a work from home option has grown by 40 percent in the past 5 years

Legislative session ends with plenty of hits and misses

OLYMPIA — The 2020 regular legislative session is coming to a close.… Continue reading

As the deadline nears, state lawmakers face a few challenges

As state lawmakers in Olympia enter the final turn of the 2020… Continue reading

Brunell’s treatise on Lower Snake River dams is flooded with falsehoods

Don Brunell’s recent column, “Dams are the Northwest’s Flood Busters” (Jan. 24,… Continue reading