Public Library Selected for Competitive Federal Humanities Grant



$10,000 Grant Will Help the Library Recover from the Coronavirus Pandemic
Mount Vernon, Ohio — The Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County has been selected as one of 200 libraries nationwide for the American Library Association’s American Rescue Plan: Humanities Grants for Libraries opportunity, an emergency relief program to assist libraries that have been adversely affected by the pandemic.
With funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, the Public Library will use funds to anchor itself in the community as a strong humanities institution. The competitive award comes with a $10,000 grant that will help the library deliver excellent programs and services related to culture, history, literature, and other humanities subjects.
More than 370 libraries applied for the grant, according to ALA. View the full list of selected libraries.
The participating libraries, selected through a competitive, peer-reviewed application process, include public libraries, academic/college libraries, K-12 libraries, and tribal, special and prison libraries. The recipients represent 45 states and Puerto Rico and serve communities ranging in size from 642 residents in Weir, Kansas, to the city of Los Angeles. Libraries were chosen with an emphasis on reaching historically under served and/or rural communities.
“We are so proud to be chosen for this amazing opportunity,” said Library Director John K. Chidester. “This grant will allow our library to better serve our patrons and plan strong, enriching humanities programming as we come out of the pandemic.”
The Library plans to use American Rescue Plan grant funds to reinvigorate PLMVKC’s adult and teen humanities offerings by presenting “The Ohio Writers Community Book Discussion Series.” This 6-month initiative will consist of a monthly book giveaway that introduces PLMVKC readers to Ohio-based writers from a variety of genres: memoir, literary fiction, true-crime, personal essays, speculative fiction, and poetry. Each book giveaway will culminate in an author visit to our Main Library, where patrons will be treated to a short reading by the visiting writer, a panel discussion with local experts engaging in conversation around the writers’ work, and an open Q & A session that invites Library patrons to talk with the authors about their work.
“Libraries have faced significant hardships throughout the pandemic —from budget cuts to staff furloughs to building closures — especially in our communities of the greatest need,” said ALA President Patty Wong. “This crucial support from NEH will enable our beloved institutions, and the dedicated people who run them, to rebuild and emerge from the pandemic stronger than ever.”
American Rescue Plan: Humanities Grants for Libraries is an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) made possible with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) through the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.”
As with all Library programs, the Ohio Writers Community Book Discussion series will be free and open to the public. For more information about the Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County’s upcoming literary programming, please visit our website at www.knox.net, email knoxwrites1@gmail.com or call (740) 392-BOOK ext 259.
Information courtesy of the Public Library of Mount Vernon and Knox County