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Community Street Sheet

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Community Street Sheet

Kansas City Public Library, Mo.

Anti-Racism, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion | 2020 | Top Innovator

Innovation Summary

A printed Street Sheet details the availability of such resources as shelters, meal services, COVID-19 testing and other health services to people across Kansas City who are experiencing homelessness, unemployed and not in school. The sheet is updated weekly and distributed to over 200 community agencies and to police officers and security guards.

Problem Statement

With the closing of KCPL’s physical locations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, connecting with vulnerable populations became a challenge. Yet, it was more essential than ever to continue to assist them in locating and accessing vital community services and resources. The library’s Community Resources team recognized an opportunity to work with its network of community partners to spread the word about those resources, making sure that those experiencing homelessness — and reliant on the library for such information — get it.


Innovation

It was crucial to identify a means of informing people who lack access to technology, the internet and digital media. Creating a printed sheet for distribution was an old-fashioned but reliable communication tool. Key to its success was an innovative collaboration with a well-developed network of community partners, which allowed distribution of the Street Sheet through more than 200 local agencies. Those partners also were important in identifying and updating information on available resources.


Progress

The Street Sheet became, and continues to be, one of the most trusted sources of printed information in the Kansas City metropolitan area. As a result, countless individuals experiencing homelessness and other vulnerable populations are familiar with the broad menu of essential resources and are taking advantage of them. The project underscores the library’s commitment to serve as a community connector.