Towards its vision of Better, more accessible, libraries for all in Australia, 2013 saw FOLA continue its focus, at local and national levels, on public library advocacy and encouraging more local public library managers and their councils to recognise the return on investment if they initiate, foster and work with Library Friends within their communities.
FOLA continues to hear about, and report on, the outcomes from effective partnerships between Library Friends, councils and their library managers. Yet across Australia more such partnerships are needed if public libraries are to prosper and meet their full community potential.
The year past saw FOLA continue its focus, at the local and national level, on advocacy towards the vision of better, more accessible, libraries for all in Australia. Indicative of this was the commencement of Australia’s first award for library advocacy, and one of the very few worldwide.
As a national voice of the 60 per cent of Australians who use and value their public libraries, FOLA has this focus in common with the professional national and state public library associations in Australia.
The year past saw FOLA - as the national voice of the 60 per cent of Australians of all ages who use and value their public libraries - extend its focus on advocacy towards its vision of Better, more accessible, libraries for all in Australia.
In one of his communications during the year to me, Justice Kirby observed that 'Friends of Libraries Australia is needed now more than ever before', a fair reflection of the challenges to be addressed by all of those many in Australia who believe that its libraries are fundamental markers of a civilized, literate, educated, informed and democratic nation.
During the year FOLA continued to demonstrate that, like many Friends groups themselves, it is helping to make a diff erence in the way libraries are perceived and supported.