Lesezentrum Steiermark (AUT)
is a non-profit organization for the support of public and school libraries in the state of Styria. It was founded in 2005 and is still funded by the regional government of Styria, the Roman-Catholic diocese of Graz, the regional education authority and the national government.
The LESEZENTRUM works with and for about 600 Styrian libraries:
– 230 public libraries (located at and run by municipalities, parishes, trade-unions groups, …)
– 350 school libraries
– 40 special libraries (in associations, companies, hospitals, prisons, …)
1400 to 1500 persons work in the public libraries, about 90% of them voluntarily (not paid).
Our Job and our activities
We help establish and develop libraries, advise on book and media stocks, initiate, support and organize pedagogical activities in libraries, organize training courses for librarians.
Currently, we focus on literacy education for young migrants and the accessibility to libraries for people with disabilities. Thus, we play a significant role regarding literacy and provide essential input for developing and building up an efficient library and literacy education network in Styria.
We have gained a lot of experience in managing EU-funded projects. We have been active in several LLL-projects with international partners. We are also part of the European Literacy Policy Network (ELINET). We frequently exchange ideas and experience with partner institutions in neighboring countries (e.g. Slovenia, Hungary, Switzerland).
Five employees, three of them are qualified librarians, are experts in the fields of libraries, literacy, parental and family training. Most of the staff members regularly give lectures and training courses for librarians, teachers and kindergarten teachers, especially on the topics of literacy and library development.