To enhance my ALA conference experience I introduced myself and talked with the people who were seated nearby. One of the many I spoke to was an Australian woman called Alyson Dalby who is employed as a University Librarian in Sydney. In her spare time she is also a director of an organisation called "The International Librarians Network", which is a volunteer organisation to promote peer mentoring amongst all types of librarians and library support staff across the world.
It is a program that promotes and co-ordinates international peer networking and learning between individuals working in any library field. The ILN will use the information provided by prospective participants to match them with other participants to form a partnership. There are two programmes run each each year - August to December, and January to May. Throughout these rounds conversation topics are provided by ILN to help move the networking along. The idea is that individuals will connect with each over that 4 month period, having conversations based on the discussion starters, bouncing ideas off each other, talking through goals and helping to problem solve. They also hold regular twitter chats on varying topics through the year.
What is the ILN and how does it work? Have a look at this video.
The next scheduled round of ILN will begin shortly, you can register for an expression of interest here .
It seems to be a very worthwhile venture, and if you would like to support it either through participating, volunteering or through donations, please visit the website or connect with them through the channels below.