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Posted on: August 5, 2021

Grant for Library Puts Focus on Families with Enhanced Programs and Services

Bright By Text

The New Braunfels Public Library was recently awarded a grant through the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to become a Family Place Library...

The New Braunfels Public Library was recently awarded a grant through the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to become a Family Place LibraryTM, with the overall goal to develop and promote an enhanced family-friendly environment by transforming libraries into community centers for literacy, early childhood development, parent education and engagement, family support, and community information. 

Family Place Libraries feature several core components including trained staff, special collections (like books, toys, early literacy kits, music, and multimedia materials) for babies, toddlers, parents, caregivers, and service providers. The core components also include parent/child workshops, specially designed spaces, and additional programs for babies and toddlers. There is also an emphasis placed on community outreach, collaboration, and partnerships. In New Braunfels, library visitors can expect most of these changes in the Fall/Winter of 2021-2022. Until then, parents and caregivers are encouraged to sign up for another Family Place component: Bright by Text, a national program that puts expert tips, games, and child development information directly into the hands of parents and caregivers through text messages. 

“Texting is a quick, easy way to get information out to busy families, so we’re very excited to provide this service to our community,” said Youth Services Manager Jenny Rodriguez. “Not only will you get tips specific to your child’s age, you will also receive texts about the library’s programming and news from our local partners.” 

The texting service includes topics like brain development, games and activities, health and wellness, STEM, safety, and more. Bright by Text partners with experts like PBS, Zero to Three, Nurse-Family Partnership, The Institute for Learning and Brain Sciences, Sesame Street, and the CDC to develop content for families with children of all ages (from prenatal to 8 years old). In addition to expert content, Bright by Text includes messages about information and resources specific to the New Braunfels community, including local library programming and resources, food pantries, and preschool open enrollment periods. 

To sign up, parents and caregivers with children under 8 can text the word FAMILYPLACE to 274448. They will receive 2 to 4 text messages per week, and each message includes a link to a landing page with more details, short videos, and links to related resources. Texts are available in English and Spanish. For more information about Family Place or Bright by Text at the New Braunfels Public Library, visit www.nbtexas.org/familyplace or call the library at 830-221-4300.

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