The beginning of a new year is a time to look back. In spite of all the challenges, there have also been many moments of rejoicing. I’ve seen small seeds of change begin to take root and new doors open.
Here are a few glimpses of the transformational impacts I’ve seen this year.
- One of the librarians I’ve trained has begun to disagree with me, presenting well-thought out, professional reasons about why his ideas will work better than mine. This is huge! He started with no knowledge of how to run a library; now he really doesn’t need my help as he offers excellent library service to the students and teachers of his school.
- A librarian I met through our library conference reached out for help in evaluating which online resource was most affordable and would best meet the needs of her students. I coached her through the selection process, and now over 1,000 students have access to a quality information source, even when they are studying at home.
- So many students don’t have access to the technology they need to succeed in distance learning. I connected a Jordanian educator with an American friend who had an old laptop to donate to a family that only had one smart phone for use by multiple children. This is just one example of how I’ve been able to network and help others find the resources they need to have an impact through their work.
- Although it’s only about 50 miles away as a crow flies, I’ve never been able to visit the librarian I’m training in Bethlehem. But we talk on Zoom or send emails and WhatsApp messages. She has said she doesn’t feel so alone because she knows she has someone to support her in her work. I love when we are interrupted during Zoom meetings, as I see her heart for her students and watch how she implements ideas I’ve shared. My work has a trickle-down impact on young Arab kids in Bethlehem.
- I was asked to present an online training for the librarians at one school. Their high-school librarian had no idea of how to support research or why she even needed to know about online resources. Slowly, slowly, as we’ve met and she demonstrates what she is learning, I see her getting excited about how she can impact students and teachers.
The list goes on. Many of these small impacts are part of ongoing relationships. As we have navigated the shared challenges of COVID, slowly, slowly seeds of change are being planted.
What are the seeds of change that you are planting in others' lives or that are being planted in your own life?
About the Author: Libby is an IDEAS Associate and professional librarian. She currently resides in Jordan and works with libraries in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia. Enjoy other blogs by Libby, such as Best Books of 2020.