This spring our section was invited by our section member Jorun Systad to Norway. Some sections have earlier arranged conferences for librarians in the hosting country in connection to the meeting and for the first time our Section tried the concept. It worked very well.

Our meeting started with an informal dinner with members from the Norwegian labor union Fagforbundet. They have generously been supporting our project Sister Libraries and they were also supporting partner during our meeting. So the first day of our meeting was a conference for children’s librarians in Norway and us. There were about fifty librarians attending. The chair of our section, Ingrid Bon, gave a presentation “Measuring the collaboration between public libraries and schools” reflecting on experiences from the Netherlands. It was followed by a presentation by Carolynn Rankin, corresponding member of our section and Ulla Pötsönen, SC member of our section: “The IFLA Sister Libraries – the story of an international network: reflections and future directions”. It was really interesting to get the story of our project, from the start until where we are now, a very good example how libraries can connect, inspire and back up ideas and develop together in many ways.

During the afternoon we got the opportunity to listen to examples from Norway. Reinert Mithassel, supervisor Deichmanske library and project leader, talked about the newest library in Norway, just opened a week earlier, called Tøyen for tweenies – presentation of a new way to provide library services for young people. It made us very curious and we were fortunate to be able to visit the library the following day. Gjertrud Øvland, Librarian at Oslo Public Library and Katarina Eisenstein (17 years old) talked about USAGT – debate arena for young people 13-19, taking place in Oslo public library. The goal of the debate arena is to have young people participating in all different aspects of both arranging and carrying out the debates. The two Norwegian examples really put focus on the importance of involving children and young adults.

After the conference we started off with our agenda for our meeting. We mainly focused on our new businesses that is our new projects: Best practices and the Revision of our Guidelines and of course the upcoming IFLA WLIC in Columbus, Ohio, USA in august. There are always many tasks to deal with.

Our meeting was completed with a very extensive workshop in connection with the revision of our new guidelines. The workshop was successfully conducted by Carolynn Rankin and we are all eager to continue our work together.

standing committee

The attendees during our mid term meeting were: Ingrid Bon, Chair (The Netherlands), Ulla Pötsönen, Information coordinator (Finland), Jorun Systad (Norway), Cosmas Mabeya (South Africa), Ruxandra Nazare (Romania), Søren Dahl Mortensen (Denmark), Carolynn Rankin, correspinding member (United Kingdom), Ingrid Källström, Secretary (Sweden) and Charlotta Boström as a member of Best Practices working group (Sweden).

Ingrid Källström
IFLA Section Libraries for Children and Young Adults