Washington Park Community Celebrates Opening of Neighborhood Library
Join us at 6 p.m. on Thursday, March 26, to celebrate the opening of Washington Park Neighborhood Library, which has been closed for the past three years.
Community members will present the Washington Park library with books donated at last year's Read In and saved for the reopening of the facility, they will introduce Providence Community Library (which has pledged to keep all the neighborhood libraries open), and they will encourage patrons to join a new Washington Park Friends of the Library group to protect and support their local library.
Music and refreshments will be provided.
Sponsored by Open Table of Christ Church.
And here's a cheerful email from Patricia:
Dear library advocates,
We are delighted to report that Library Friends groups are forming all over the city! While Smith Hill, Mount Pleasant, Rochambeau and Wanskuck have active and long-standing Library Friends groups, the other neighborhood libraries do not currently have such groups.
Friends of the Library serve three important purposes:
* They support their neighborhood library--They hold bake and book sales and bazaars to raise money for library books and equipment, they volunteer to work on specific projects designated by the library staff, and they sponsor programs designed to contribute to the cultural life of the neighborhood.
* They protect their neighborhood library. Their strong neighborhood presence and authority to speak on behalf of neighborhood patrons gives the Friends groups added clout when campaigning for library legislation or appropriations. In the darkest days, when PPL has attempted to reduce staff and/or close neighborhood libraries in years past (and this year), the Library Friends groups write letters in protest to PPL trustees and to City officials, organize petition drives, and participate in rallies.
* They help to govern the library system. Assuming that the City decides that Providence Community Library is the best steward of the neighborhood library system, PCL has proposed a system of governance whereby representatives from all neighborhood libraries participate in policy decision-making as part of the PCL's board of trustees. We anticipate that these representatives will be selected by the neighborhood Friends groups.
Knight Memorial has already held an organizational meeting to establish a Friends group and is planning a second meeting soon.
Meanwhile, both Fox Point and South Providence have scheduled organizational meetings for March 31. Those interested in joining the Fox Point Friends of the Library should meet in their neighborhood library that Tuesday night at 6:30 p.m. South Providence's meeting is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. on the same night. http://friendsofsouthprovidencelibrary.wordpress.com/
Olneyville is holding an organizational meeting on the following night--April 1--at 6:30 p.m. Meet at the Olneyville Library.
Washington Park is reopening next Monday, March 23. Open Table of Christ will be conducting a Friends Sign-Up next week, and we hope to be able to announce an organizational meeting at Washington Park by early in April. If you live in the Washington Park area and would like to join a Friends Group there, please send me an email.
Providence Community Library is continuing to have productive meetings with the Mayor's staff. We feel encouraged by these sessions, but the Mayor still has not firmly committed himself to PCL. We have another meeting scheduled in about 10 days, and we are hoping for a decision soon after this meeting is held.