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  Latest News from the Youth Libraries Group

Are you passionate about children's books and reading? Have you considered becoming a judge for the country's oldest children's book awards? Many past judges describe the experience as being the highlight of their careers.

We are re-advertising for 2021-22 CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway judges in the following YLG Regions: North East, South West and Yorkshire & Humber.

Experience of working with children and children’s books is key - as is the capacity to participate fully in judging and wider award processes. Candidates should hold current CILIP membership and be prepared to join CILIP’s Youth Libraries Group (YLG) if not already a member.

Invitation for BAME library workers to join the judging panel

Alongside these regional vacancies, CILIP is opening applications across all regions for library workers (both members and non-members) from BAME backgrounds to join the 2021-22 judging panel.

CILIP is committed to championing diversity, inclusion and representation across all areas of its work.  In response to industry-wide research on the importance of representation and inclusion, including BookTrust Represents, CLPE’s Reflecting Realities report and CILIP’s own diversity review of the Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards, we are opening applications to the judging panel to non-CILIP members from BAME backgrounds.

You can find out more about these opportunities here.

Becoming a judge offers great opportunities for CPD including:

• Networking with authors, illustrators, publishers and library professionals
• Training and support delivered by experts in writing and illustration
• Free books delivered to your door.

Submit your application by Wednesday 11 September at 5pm.

Follow this link to find out more, apply and download the CKG judge job description.

If you have any questions please contact the YLG Chair at

Plus you can find out  more in our free Webinar on becoming a CKG judge at

The winners of CILIP Carnegie & Kate Greenaway Medals 2019 have been revealed and it is the first time in the Medals history that both winning titles have been written in verse. Alison Brumwell, Chair of the judging panel for 2019, said: “2019 marks the 30th anniversary of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The right to an education and to be able to read are fundamentals. We know how much power a book holds between its covers. This year’s two Medals winners are a case in point, each offering a rich, layered reading experience and an enduring power to inspire.

“Carnegie Medal winner The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo offers a searing, unflinching exploration of culture, family and faith within a truly innovative verse structure. We follow the emotional odyssey of its heroine, Xiomara, as she rails, cries, laughs, loves, prays, writes, raps and, ultimately, offers hope. Xiomara comes to life on every page and shows the reader how girls and women can learn to inhabit, and love, their own skin. This is a powerful novel on every level:  its vivid evocation of a Harlem neighbourhood, the challenges, disappointments and often misdirected love of motherhood and intimate glimpses of a young woman’s interior life are laid bare for the reader. The novel’s inventive use of language celebrates life and Dominican heritage.

“In Kate Greenaway winner The Lost Words, illustrated by Jackie Morris, life cycles of the natural world are celebrated in vivid detail. Every tiny movement and variegated fleck of colour is rendered exquisitely and gives vibrance to author Robert Macfarlane’s spells. The illustrations test our acuity and make us all think on a much deeper level about scale, colour and proportion; also, about representations of loss and absence. We are invited to “read” on more than one level and to reflect upon a world in which change can mean irreparable loss, impoverishing both language and the environment. This is an astonishing book, which deserves the highest accolades.”

Find out more about both medal winners and also which books won the new Shadowers’ Choice Award by reading the full press release here.

Enjoying books is, for most young children, an essential part of childhood. But what if you can't see? Tactile image books are the solution for blind or partially sighted children, as every picture is designed to be explored by touch. Imagine putting out your hand to a page and actually feeling the rough bricks of a wall, the hairy nose of a camel, the slimy squish of a slug! These incredible books aren't commercially produced, but made by creative people from every walk of life. Just as conventional picture books have their prestigious competitions, such as the CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal award, tactile illustration has the Typhlo and Tactus International Tactile Book Competition to encourage tactile book creation across the globe. This year is its 20th anniversary. Judging will take place in Brussels in October 2019, with a prize of 1000 Euros for the winning entry.

Each participating country can submit up to five books to the international contest. The UK shortlisting round will take place in September 2019 and is being organised by the ClearVision Project, a children's braille library. The UK judges will include children and adults who have a visual impairment, tactile image experts and illustrator Rod Campbell, author of immensely popular children's picture books including everyone’s favourite Dear Zoo. The Youth Libraries Group are delighted to be involved with the running of a series of workshops to be held across the United Kingdom which will offer advice on the creation and use of tactile books.  Details of these and a series of videos offering similar guidance and advice, created with support from the University of Central Lancashire, will be added to the Clearvision Project website.

The deadline for UK entries is 16th August 2019. For more information, guidance and an entry form, vist the ClearVision website.


The Youth Libraries Group are delighted to announce thanks to the generosity of honorary member and champion of the group, Klaus Flugge from Andersen Press, the bursary winner who attended the joint Youth Libraries Group and School Library Association Weekend Course Building Identity, Building Readers was Melanie McGilloway, a YLG South West committee member.

At the week-end course the winner of this year's Youth Librarian Award was revealed. The award is administered by the Youth Libraries Group & supported by the Enid Blyton Estate and recognises the innovation and dedication by a staff member working with children and young people in a public library setting. Congratulations to Olivia Barnden of Kirklees Libraries.

The Youth Libraries Group is undergoing an exciting period of change and refocusing. This makes it an excellent time to engage with the National and Regional committees. The Wales branch require a Chair Elect and also enthusiastic committee members with immediate effect. 

The Chair Elect role will shadow the Chair with an understanding to moving into the Chair position after a period of training. The post is well suited to members that are qualifying, chartering or looking to further their professional awareness and development.

A brief statement outlining why you would like to take on this role should be sent to the Wales Secretary, Alexandra Ball by June 30th who can also be contacted for any queries.

The YLG Regional Chair Elect job description can be found at (CILIP login required)

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