Advocacy, Outreach and Collaboration
Prior research on the information behaviors and relocation practices of Puerto Ricans to Central Florida has revealed that libraries are not their primary choice when trying to solve information needs. As they try to make sense and learn their new environment, they tend to solve their information needs by getting referrals and pointers from people they trust, and from agencies and organizations due to ascribed authoritativeness. But as it is the case with libraries, these agencies and organizations must deal with figuring out how to best serve their audiences. This project explored and documented case studies from libraries, governmental and non-governmental agencies, as well as profit and non-profit organizations. It focused on agencies and organizations in Central Florida and Northern New Jersey, and whose primary mission and/or goal is to provide information, services, or social assistance to Latinos or Puerto Rican newcomers. From each organization, administrators and/or staff were interviewed to address these research objectives: 1) examine the how these organizations reach out, interact, and serve Puerto Rican newcomers, 2) identify and document their best practices, and, 3) identify and document the challenges and limitations in reaching out and serving this population. It is expected that the results from this study help libraries to identify other ways to reach out to Latinos and Puerto Rican audiences. It is also the hope of the researchers for libraries to identify potential collaborators and partners to help communities best serve their constituents.