Hubbard Public Library “Toy Lending Library” and Children’s Room Team Won ALA’s Ernest A. DiMattia Award for Innovation and Service to the Community and Profession
CHICAGO — Hubbard Public Library, Ohio’s “Toy Lending Library” and children’s room team Mary Anne Russo, Heather Phibbs, Dana Tirabassi and Amanda Balla have won the 2022 Ernest A. DiMattia Award from the ALA for Innovation and Service to the Community and the Profession. The award, supported by the DiMattia family, recognizes a librarian or library for showing leadership in anticipating emerging trends in services, products and technologies that will improve the library’s position in its community.
The new “Toy Lending Library” in the Children’s Room of the Hubbard Public Library officially opened on July 20, 2020. It is the only toy library in Trumbull, Mahoning and Columbiana counties. This new venture offers exciting hands-on learning opportunities with engaging educational toys and other resources.
The wide range of offerings includes a dollhouse, a musical llama, family games such as Zingo, which uses sight words to help children learn to read, SmartGames which facilitate problem solving and “Sprout Early Learning Backpacks” filled with educational books, toys and games.”
Grateful families included the “Evans Seven”, the family of Jason and Heidi Evans and their five daughters. They were held back during the first months of COVID-19 by the games and toys they borrowed.
Heidi Evans wrote: “Due to COVID-19 we were limited in the activities available for our daughters. Literally all activities have been cancelled.
The time was filled with games such as their favourite, the Little Red Riding Hood game.
Sherri Giancola wrote that her grandchildren appreciate the toy boxes, which contain “sustainable” and “educational” toys.
The Toy Lending Library was made possible by a generous donation from Barb and Loren Kindler in honor of their grandchildren.
This is an example of the many exciting things offered by the Children’s Room team.
Children’s Room events included a program providing “Grab, Go & Read” bags containing age-appropriate books for infants and toddlers, funded by a grant from the Ohio Children’s Foundation.
The annual award, consisting of $5,000 and an achievement citation, will be presented at the ALA’s annual conference in June 2022.
Committee members for the ALA Ernest A. DiMattia Award for Innovation and Service to the Community and the Profession are Chair Dora Ho, Young Adult Librarian, Retired, Los Angeles Public Library, CA; Julianne Bedel, director, Medina County District Library, Ohio; Glen Benedict; Kristin Buxton, science librarian, University of Oregon; Susan Earl, Library Direct, Brentwood, Tennessee; John P. Holt Brentwood Library Director, Brentwood, Tennessee.
More information about the Ernest A. DiMattia Award for Innovation and Service to Community and Profession, including how to submit a nomination, is available on the ALA website (www.ala.org) .