Here at Bridgton Public Library (BPL) we work to provide you with a safe space to research, study, charge your phone, hang out, and relax.
Next to the children’s room is a room decorated and curated with teens in mind. We have bean bag chairs, a charging station, latest new releases, a white board for doodles, and more!
Did you know?
Librarians just want to help you find the information you need. We won’t judge you, and we will always keep your questions and checkouts private. That being said, we understand there are some things you want to keep to yourself. Don’t forget, you can always read while you are in the library and look up books using our book lists or catalog instead of asking for help. We are always willing to show you how to use these resources.
We are always adding new materials, and we constantly update our lists. If there is list or a book you think we should have, feel free to let the person at the desk know! We’ll put the suggestion in anonymously for you if you’d like.
A great way to track your reading is to use Beanstack! Where we also host our summer reading programs and challenges throughout the school year.
Another great site is Goodreads where you can organize your books into digital shelves, track books that you want to read, and have books recommended to you based on your reading.
If you (or someone with you) are experiencing a medical emergency, are in danger, or are feeling suicidal, call 911 immediately.
Crisis Call Center: 1-800-273-8255 or text ANSWER to 839863
Crisis Text Line (U.S. only): text HELLO to 741741
Suicide Hotline: 1-800-784-2433
National Coalition Against Censorship: NCAC’s mission is to promote freedom of thought, inquiry, and expression and oppose censorship in all its forms, including education on First Amendment rights and obligations.
The most impactful way to effect change in a democracy is by registering to vote and voting at every election. It’s critical to research ahead of time what will be on the ballot, so you can go into the voting booth empowered and confident on where you stand and what you’re voting for.
In Bridgton, you can register to vote at the town hall. The town website provides information on when upcoming elections are taking place and what will be on the ballot. Check it out here!
The library also maintains a page with information about voting and upcoming elections. Check it out here!
- Anti-Oppression: Anti-Racism Libguide
- Scaffolded Anti-Racist Resources
- White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack
- 10 Ways to Fight for Social Justice During the Coronavirus Pandemic Teen Vogue
- 11 Things You Can Do to Help Black Lives Matter End Police Violence Teen Vogue
- 1619 (podcast)
- Beyond the Hashtag: How to Take Anti-Racist Action in Your Life Teen Vogue
- Black Lives Matter: Resources and Ways You Can Get Involved Young Invincibles
- Code Switch (podcast)
- How Student Activism Shaped the Black Lives Matter Movement Forbes
- Kids These Days (podcast) by teens, about teens, for teens
- Our National Conversation About Conversations About Race (podcast)
- Racial Justice and Equity DoSomething.org
- Still Processing (podcast)
- Youth Activism Racial Equity Tools
Race, Food, and Environmental Justice
- Action Plan: Making the Case Racial Equity Tools
- An Annotated Bibliography on Structural Racism Present in the U.S. Food System Michigan State University
- A New EPA Report Shows that Environmental Racism is Real The Atlantic
- Dismantling Racism in the Food System Food First
- Environmental and Climate Justice Resources NAACP
- Environmental Justice, Explained (video)
- Environmental Justice and White Supremacy Resources 350 PDX
- Environmental Justice Grants, Resources, Strategic Planning, and Collaborative Partnerships Environmental Protection Agency
- Environmental Justice Racial Equity Tools
- Environmental Racism Food Empowerment Project
- Equity and Environment City of Seattle
- Food Environment Atlas USDA
- Food Gap Map Feeding America
- Food Justice Racial Equity Tools
- Learning about Equity: A Resource List Community Food Systems Program
- Organizational Assessment Tools and Resources Racial Equity Tools
- Racial and Environmental Justice Are Two Sides of the Same Coin The Nation
- Racial Equity Challenge Resources Food Solutions New England
- Read Up on the Links Between Racism and the Environment The New York Times
- Resources on Environmental Justice, Racism, and Whiteness Washington Environmental Council
Sutter Health offers articles and resources on Abuse and Violence for Teens. Did you know that “teens are twice as likely as adults to become victims of violent crimes”? This website discusses how to seek help and prevent violence against others.
- Through These Doors is a domestic violence resource center, which has a location in Bridgton. The center “serves victims and survivors in Cumberland County, Maine [and] provide safe and accessible services to all people affected by domestic violence regardless of race, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, gender, age, primary language spoken, or immigration status.”
- Domestic Violence & Children
- Need help now? Through These Doors offers a free and confidential helpline 24/7/365
- Maine Coalition to End Domestic Violence is the only statewide organization whose primary goal is ending domestic abuse in Maine.
Education and employment go hand-in-hand and allow use to live the lives we aspire to. However, both can be overwhelming to navigate! Below are resources to help you make sense of school and prepare for your professional future.
- Purdue Online Writing Lab – Provides information on researching and writing papers, and well as a citation guide for MLA and APA style papers.
- CIA World Fact Book – Provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, transportation,military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.
- Library of Congress Digital Collections – Includes digitized collections covering history and historical documents, film, photography, art, maps, music, geography, and more.
- Kahn Academy – Free online help and classes in all areas of math and science, computer coding, and more
- Why does citation matter? It’s important to cite your sources to add validity to your argument and prove you have done research. It also gives credit to people whose work you are using and avoids issues of plagiarism. Plagiarism is a serious offense and is not only limited to the copying of direct quotes, but also rewording an original idea of another person. Furthermore, people who are interested can follow your citation to read your sources if they are interested in learning more about the topic.
Are you interested in going to college? This can feel impossible if you don’t know many people who have gone or graduated from college or if the cost of higher education is prohibitive. No matter the concerns you have about applying, getting in, or paying for college, there are resources available to help you make a well-informed decision that is right for you.
- College Board
- College Board Planning Your Future
- College Board Scholarship Search
- College Navigator
- FAFSA (Federal Student Aid)
- Khan Academy SAT Practice
- Khan Academy PSAT/NMSQT Practice Test
- Peterson’s Real Guide to Colleges & Universities
- Texas Common Application for College Admission
- Texas Workforce Commission Career & Education Planning Resources
- Career Colleges and Vocational Schools
It can be overwhelming to think about your future career path, especially when career planning can feel like a job all on its own! We’re here to help make it more manageable. Start your planning here:
- Check out this guide for Career Planning for Teens
- Explore the 5 essential career planning resources identified by Learning Liftoff
- Youth.gov offers a wide array of resources on their career exploration & skills development page – take a look!
- Plan your career
- Career profiles are incredibly useful in figuring out what a given job entails and whether it is work you would enjoy
- Youth Central recommends developing these eight skills for improved odds of being hired. Do you have all eight?
But what about everything else that goes into getting a job? Once you have an idea of what kind of work you’d like to do, it’s time to figure out things like cover letters, resumes, and interview skills.
- Resumes – learn what a resume is and how to write one here
- Cover Letters – discover the importance of cover letters and how to create one that catches a future employer’s eye
- References – most jobs will require you to include personal/professional references; check out these tips for choosing the right references
- Online job searches – the majority of job searching (and applying) is done online these days; learn how to navigate the online job hunt
- How to find a job – information on alternative avenues for finding employment and how to avoid scammers
- Sending in your application – before you hit send, go through this checklist to make sure everything is in order
- Volunteering and work experience – work experience and volunteering can help you gain experience that employers are looking for while providing you an opportunity to discover if you enjoy a particular employment field
- Interviewing – check out these interview tips!
Navigating relationships with family, friends, and romantic partners can be confusing. Thankfully, there are many reliable sources that can help you in your interpersonal relationships.
- Bullying – Learn about what constitutes as bullying, what resources there are for getting help, and various fact sheets to help you navigate bullying you experience or witness.
- Bullying, Safety & Privacy – ” As you get older, life can get more complicated. Bullying. Sexual assault. Protecting your privacy online. You don’t have to figure this stuff out alone — we’re here to help.”
- Relationships and Social Skills – below are some featured articles from the Relationships and Social Skills page:
- Family – “We first learn about loving and caring relationships from our families. Family is defined as a domestic group of people with some degree of kinship — whether through blood, marriage, or adoption. Ideally each child is nurtured, respected, and grows up to care for others and develop strong and healthy relationships. This does not mean that it is always easy to make and keep friends; it just means that we share the goal of having strong relationships.”
- Friends – “As you get older, some of your friendships will start to change, and some may grow deeper. You might also begin to know many more people, although not all of them will be your close friends. Chances are, you will also start to spend more time with your friends, and maybe talk on the phone more. Changes in relationships are natural but not always easy.“
- Understanding Relationships – “Relationships can make us feel fantastic! But a fight with a close friend can really hurt. It’s also upsetting when the people closest to you, like your family, don’t seem to get you. Plus, relationships can be very confusing, especially when they change as you get older.”
- Romantic and Sexual Relationships – ” Confused about relationships? You’re not alone. But don’t stress — we’re here to help. Whether you’re dating, hooking up, or breaking up, we can help you figure out what’s going on.”
As stated on Maine’s state legislature page, “Emancipation is a legal process conducted through the District Court which declares a minor over the age of 16 to be independent of his or her parents or guardians.” The process by which this is achieved is outlined here. The first step in the process requires the teenager to fill out and submit a formal petition for emancipation, which can be found here.
Kids Legal summarizes the requirements for gaining legal emancipation in the state of Maine as follows:
- You must be at least 16 years old
- You must refuse to live in a home provided by your parent(s) or legal guardian(s)/custodian(s)
- The Petition for Emancipation must be filed in the District Court in Maine where one of your parents or legal guardians/custodians lives
- You must be able to prove that you have a plan to take care of your basic needs
- You must be able to show the Court that you have sufficient maturity to make decisions for yourself, and
- You must be able to show the Court that it is in your best interests to be emancipated
Additionally, the Maine District Court will appoint a free lawyer to represent you. The appointed lawyer can help you fill out your petition and will represent you in the court hearing. You can fill out a request for counsel form here.
Gender and sexuality can be confusing to define, and it can feel like your own gender and sexual identities are in a state of flux! Learning about these concepts and reading the stories of others who have questioned their own gender and sexual identities can help you navigate your own journey.
- Gender Spectrum – Teens
- Understanding Gender
- The Language of Gender
- Sexuality and Gender Identity
- Sexual identity
- Gender and Gender Identity
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ) youth are part of every community, come from all walks of life, and are present in every racial, ethnic, socioeconomic, and geographical group. While many LGBTQ youth transition from childhood to adulthood successfully and become healthy and productive adults, others are negatively impacted as a result of many factors; for LGBTQ youth, social stigma about their sexual choices or identities can be particularly difficult.Health Considerations for LGBTQ Youth | CDC.gov
- The Trevor Project – get help now with TrevorChat and TrevorText
- Check out the LGBTQ stories, FAQs, and resources found on Sex, Etc.
- Resources for domestic violence within the LGBTQ+ community
- Health Considerations for LGBTQ Youth
- LGBTQ Youth Resources
- LGBTQ info for teens
- All about being LGBTQ
Health is a broad term that encompasses many aspects of life. It is also something that is easy to take for granted — right up until your health status changes. Discover what impacts your health and how better to care for your body. While our relationships to our bodies and minds can be complicated, they are worth working on as our bodies and minds are our lifelong companions!
Would you like to have more energy, clearer skin, and get sick less often? There are many medications, energy drinks, and strategies available, but eating healthy is one of the most important and universally effective ways to improve your health!
- Choose My Plate
- What is nutrition?
- Nutrition, Health, and Weight for Teens
- Learn about healthy eating and food-related issues here
- The National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) supports individuals and families affected by eating disorders and serves as a catalyst for prevention, cures, and access to quality care.
- Weekday Helpline: 1-800-931-2237
- Text: 741741
- View their body image resources here
- Proud2Bme is an online community created by and for teens that covers everything from fashion and beauty to news, culture, and entertainment—all with the goal of promoting positive body image and encouraging healthy attitudes about food and weight.
Feeling overwhelmed? Anxious? Unsure if what you’re feeling is “normal”? Arm yourself with knowledge! Explore what mental health professionals are saying, read accounts of others navigating mental health issues, and empower yourself to discuss this complicated and personal topic with trusted adults in your life.
- OK2TALK is a community where teens and young adults struggling with mental health conditions can find a safe place to talk about what they’re experiencing by sharing their personal stories of recovery, tragedy, struggle or hope.
- “Do you have some super-strong feelings? Maybe you change from happy and confident one minute to sad and confused the next. You are not alone!” Read more on feelings at Girls Health.
- Emotions and mental health – “Being human is an emotional experience, and we all have moments of happiness, sadness and anger. Learn ways to deal with your feelings, and how to seek help when you feel overwhelmed, hopeless or depressed.”
- The National Alliance on Mental Illness(NAMI) has a Teen Text Support Line at 207-515-8398. It’s staffed every day from Noon to 10 PM by people between 19- 23 years of age.
The Center for Disease Control and Protection works “to protect America from health, safety and security threats.” Find reliable information on all types of diseases, health concerns, and health security, including Zombie Preparedness.
Sutter Health offers many resources on puberty and health; follow the links below to check them out!
Sex, Etc. is a site by and for teens. It offers a wide variety of information on sex education including birth control, STDs, and relationships.
Scarleteen offers “sex ed for the real world,” providing information on sexuality and relationships that is “inclusive, comprehensive, supportive.”
Planned Parenthood (PP) is a powerful resource for information on sex, relationships, bodies, and more. PP can help you get on birth control, test for STDs, and answer any and all health concerns.
Sutter Health offers many resources on puberty and health; follow the links below to check them out!
- Pregnancy – how does it happen? What are your options?
- Sexual health – “You’re in control of your body and decisions. Find out about the challenges and risks associated with sex and how to stay safe.”
- Ethical sex – “Ethical sex sounds complicated and a bit difficult, but if you choose to be sexual, you should aim for ethical sex. It’s actually not as complicated as it sounds.”
Learn about Teen Vaccination from the Immunization Action Coalition (IAC), “a non-profit organization [that] works to increase immunization rates and prevent disease by creating and distributing educational materials for health professionals and the public that enhance delivery of safe and effective immunization services. IAC also facilitates communication about the safety, efficacy, and use of vaccines within the broad immunization community of patients, parents, healthcare organizations, and government health agencies.”
Knowledge is power. Arm yourself with information so you can stay safe — and help keep your friends safe, too.
- National Institute on Drug Abuse for Teens
- Brain and addiction
- Drug Facts
If you think you might have a drug problem, you are not alone and help is available.
- Check out these resources if you suspect that you or a friend has a drug problem
- Explore these resources if you suspect that your adult friend or loved one has a drug problem
- If you need help now, this site provides confidential information on treatment centers as well as helplines that you can contact
- You or a loved one in recovery? Check out our local Lakes Region Recovery Center