Friends of Beyond Access

Development practitioners know that most projects deal with information issues — from training and capacity building to awareness-raising and behavior-change communication campaigns. Yet a powerful community resource is often overlooked: libraries and librarians. Libraries are trusted institutions specifically designed to turn information into skills and opportunities.

Friends of Beyond Access are a special group of development practitioners who understand how libraries can drive social and economic development.

One of the things I have discovered since I began working in international development is that many, many development projects deal with information issues. It’s not surprising — information is the issue of our time. What is surprising is how few librarians are involved. Development professionals know their stuff, and they’re running great projects. What’s happening, though, is that people are reinventing library services.

…Now, of course I’m not saying that no one should address an information need without first consulting a librarian. I’m all for creative people finding creative solutions to problems. But librarians have been thinking about information issues for an awfully long time, and I know we could make significant contributions towards finding those creative solutions.

— Meaghan O’Connor, Sadie Hawkins Day

Friends support Beyond Access member teams, creating bridges between librarianship and development — helping forge partnerships and design effective projects. In turn, they benefit from introductions to local partners in 30+ countries, help integrating libraries into their strategies and projects, and opportunities to represent their organization. Learn more about Beyond Access services for development practitioners »

How do I become a Friend?

To become a friend, fill out the application form. We welcome new Friends on a rolling basis.

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