Grant to support One Book, One Community project

Grant to support One Book, One Community project

Levi E. Coe Library has been selected as one of 300 libraries to participate in Libraries Transforming Communities, an American Library Association initiative that helps library workers better serve their small and rural communities. 

The competitive award comes with a $3,000 grant that will help the library facilitate a One Book, One Community project.

“We are so delighted to be chosen for this amazing grant opportunity,” Levi E. Coe Library Director Jess Lobner said. “This grant will allow our community to get to know each other better and help us build a happier and healthier Middlefield for our families.”

As part of the grant, Levi Coe staff will take an online course in how to lead conversations, a skill vital to library work. Staff will then host a One Book, One Community conversation with residents using the title, Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson. The library will utilize the grant funds to purchase copies of the book for interested parties and to publicize the event, which will be held in October.

With reading and discussing Caste, the objective would be to broaden the understanding of how individual attitudes of prejudice and bigotry are baked into the operations of cultural institutions.

Through the One Book, One Community initiative, the library hopes to participate in a town-wide effort to shift attitudes and deconstruct embedded racism. 

If you are interested in getting involved or taking part in the conversation, contact Jess Lobner at or 860-349-3857, or visit

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 forums, take part in anti-violence activities, provide a space for residents to come together and discuss challenging topics, and have productive conversations.

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