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Garcia receives YALSA’s 2020 Innovation Award

CHICAGO — The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) has selected Brittany Garcia, Teen and Adult Services Librarian II at the Rancho Cucamonga (RC) Public Library in Cucamonga, California, for her Adult 101: Life Skills for Teens program as the recipient of its 2020 Innovation Award.

Garcia’s Adult 101 program was in response to four teen suicide deaths in the community. The program included a series of free workshops on a variety of adulting topics and a therapist-led mental health management workshop. In addition, she created a variety of circulating RC kits. The purpose of these kits are to provide access to healthy outlets for stress management, depression and anxiety using hand on activities while learning a new hobby. Garcia collaborated with her city’s Healthy RC Mental health team to develop the workshops and RC kits.

In her letter of support, Joanna Marrufo, Healthy RC Management Aide stated ”Brittany has been a key partner alongside Healthy RC to create meaningful opportunities for residents to access support systems and coping strategies for teen mental health. We highly recommend her work for this award because she showcased her strength of innovation and destigmatizing mental health and meeting community health needs.”

As the Innovation Award recipient, Garcia will receive a $500 award, funded by Friends of YALSA, for demonstrating a commitment to creating innovative library services for and with teens in their community. Learn more.

Members of the 2020 Innovation Award Jury are: Chair Amanda Lindsay, Teen Librarian, DeKalb County Public Library (Georgia); Caroline E. Aversamo,  Librarian 2, Teen Services, Ocean County Library (New Jersey); Samantha Farruggia, Young Adult Librarian, LaGrange Park Public Library (Illinois); Joanna Goldfarb, Youth Services Consultant, Ramapo Catskills Library System (New York); and Brian Pugsley, Library Director, Cary Academy (North Carolina).

The mission of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) is to support library staff in alleviating the challenges teens face, and in putting all teens ‒ especially those with the greatest needs ‒ on the path to successful and fulfilling lives. For more information about YALSA or to access national guidelines and other resources go to, or contact the YALSA office by phone, 800-545-2433, ext. 4390; or e-mail: [email protected].


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