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Jersey City Library Literacy Program Hosted Special Workshop for Literacy Staff...

Jersey City Library Literacy Program Hosted Special Workshop for Literacy Staff, Volunteer Tutors & Students on Friday, February 27

With the Main Library being in the throes of multi-year renovation, the Jersey City Library Literacy Program has had to think on its feet, yet, at the same time, plan for the expected…and unexpected. Hence, Literacy has been holding its many meetings and classes at various branches and other areas throughout Jersey City since the renovations started in late October 2014.

On Friday, February 27, 2015 at the Greenville Branch Library board room, the second meeting was held for the ALLIES Research Project, stemming from a grant from Dollar General to conduct research on learner leadership. Marty Finsterbusch, the director of VALUEUSA who came up from Philadelphia to facilitate the workshop, is a former adult literacy student and an advocate for adult learners. As a literacy student peer, Mr. Finsterbusch had a unique and keen perspective to help literacy staff, volunteer tutors and students become the best teachers of adult literacy. Jersey City Library Literacy Program administrative volunteer Sherly George helped Mr. Finsterbusch by writing on the dry erase board.

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Black History Month Celebration 2015 - Dr. Robert Perry

Dr. Robert Perry Celebrated Black History Monthat the Jersey City Library by Shining a Light on theRecent Passing of African-American Greats

Since 2009, the Federal Documents Department at the Main Library has been hosting Black History Month programs featuring esteemed professor Robert Perry, Ph.D. This year, the Main Library was closed, due to its ongoing renovations, so on Thursday, February 12, 2015, Dr. Perry presented at the Barack H. Obama Auditorium in the Greenville Branch Library.

Dr. Perry’s program, Artists and Activism, a participatory tribute to legends: Amiri Baraka, Ruby Dee, Ossie Davis and Maya Angelou, courted the audience with poetry, prose and a discussion of what made these artists great. The salient point: having the courage to say what’s on one’s mind, regardless of the circumstances.

By virtue of standing up for what one believes, each artist’s indomitable spirit expanded civil rights for all.

Dr. Perry chose these four people because, in 2014, three of them passed away: Amiri Baraka, January 9; Maya Angelou, May 28; and Ruby Dee, June 11. Ossie Davis died on February 4, 2005.

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Smiles Galore at the Greenville Christmas 2014 Toy Giveaway

With Christmas music serenading the Greenville ‘elves’, the stage was set for the Christmas party revelers on December 22nd, which meant, the proscenium stage was covered from end-to-end with toys arranged in age order, to make it easier when duty called for toy distribution.

‘Santa’ Kenny (Uko, who heads the Greenville Branch) served as Master of Ceremonies.

Since 2010, the Greenville Branch Library has been serving the community by holding a Christmas Toy Giveaway, making sure that no child, regardless of the family’s economic disadvantage, has a Christmas with not one present. All parents/guardians have previously registered each child, to make sure there is something waiting, as well as to ensure the family’s need.

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Hispanic Heritage Celebration

Biblioteca Criolla closed it celebrations for Hispanic Heritage with a “big bang” on Saturday, October 11th.  It was great to see many enthusiastic people coming together for this occasion. The program was well attended by the Latino community of Jersey City. In attendance there were approximately 60-plus people, among them 20 teenagers.

The program commenced with welcoming remarks from Criolla Department Head Patricia Vega, and her introducing everyone to the treasures in Biblioteca Criolla, such as services and resources. Also mentioned were the contributions and impact Latinos have made in this great nation through our strong commitment to family, faith, hard work and service.

The commemorative program consisted of guest speaker Honorable Amilkar Velez-Lopez, retired municipal judge in Newark, N.J., who was a former judge of the Central Judicial Processing Court in Essex County (Court CJP) and has resided in the Garden State for over 40 years. He

talked to the audience about the importance knowing our heritage and not forgetting where we come from. This native of Puerto Rico, whose family moved to New York in 1959 for better opportunities, gave the audience an inside look at his personal and professional experiences, and family life. He mentioned the many resources (like the libraries) available to all, urged the youth of the importance of being community-minded individuals, and to volunteer. He spoke from the heart and Criolla’s audience responded to his very easy demeanor. He ended with the philosophy that his parents taught him: “!!EL QUE PERSEVERA—TRIUNFA!!  “DIOS ME LO BENDIGA”.  (THE ONE THAT PERSEVERES, TRIUMPHS!! And he always greets and says goodbye with a, “GOD BLESS YOU.”) There was a Q & A session and many in the audience took the opportunity to ask questions.

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