Thing 16 – Advocacy, speaking up for the profession and getting published
Consider why it is important to advocate for the section of library and information sector that you work for.
Working in the third sector we rely heavily on funding from government and other sources. Therefore it is important that we market our services to increase awareness and get more people using them. This is important as it shows our value and therefore increases our chances of continuous funding.
Have a think about what advocacy you’ve been involved in
Although I don’t really think I have been involved too much in advocacy, aside from marketing information services at my work, I do try to play my part in things such as National Library day, so instance, taking out as many books as I can out of the library and encouraging my friends to do the same.
Although not anything to do with libraries I have done a couple of things with Oxfam that might be considered advocacy. I steward for Oxfam at festivals and last year organised an Oxjam event. Although these are more about raising money, it is also spreading the message of the work that Oxfam do and who the money is helping and why they need to donations.
If you haven’t been involved, reflect on what your skills are (or want to develop) what you’re most passionate about ad what you might be able to do
I’m passionate about equal opportunities and therefore the importance of information literacy and access to books, computers and the internet here and in developing countries. This is why I think public libraries are invaluable, they are key to education and free for all, what could be more important than that?
Re: getting published; I would like to get published more and I have to confess I have never considered just writing my opinion on topics and submitting them for publishing in newspapers etc. I have normally just focused on research articles and therefore this ‘thing’ has given me something else to consider doing.
I’ll add it to my ever growing list….