Porter Library receives award from United Cerebral Palsy Center
Westlake Porter Public Library has been honored with a Community Partner Award from the United Cerebral Palsy Center of Greater Cleveland. The Community Partner Award recognizes an individual or organization that has excelled in partnering with UCP to advance its mission and serve the interests of people with special needs.
In her nomination letter, UCP Activities and Training Manager Amy Vedova said, “The library is more than just a place to go for information and resources for the individuals we support; it is a place where they feel welcomed, encouraged, and are viewed as contributing members of and active partners in their community with a purpose!”
WPPL has been seeking to better serve the special needs community since 2011, when it began partnering with Connecting for Kids, a local non-profit providing education and support to families of children with developmental challenges.
Special Needs Resource Librarian Rebecca Shook was hired in 2014 to expand programming, resources and partnerships for and with the special needs community. One result is that volunteers with special needs have been serving the library since 2016, many of them through the partnership with UCP. Currently WPPL has five volunteers with special needs, three of whom come through UCP.
In addition, the library offers monthly programs for children with special needs, such as Adapted Storytime and Sensation Stations, as well as Crafty Adults and other programming for adults with special needs.
“For several years now we have intentionally worked to make individuals with special needs feel welcome here at WPPL,” said Library Director Andrew Mangels. “We appreciate this recognition of our efforts, and look forward to serving this community for years to come.”
Elaine Willis is the Public Relations Associate at Westlake Porter Public Library.