Hello again everybody!
So here’s day three of our blog. I had the opportunity today to speak with some non-volunteer teens, and boy was it informative! I talked primarily with Erica, Brandon AKA “Boo” and Dustin. There was so much information that I had to record the entire conversation in MP3 on my H2 Digital Recorder which you’ll all probably see at one point or another. I’ll be posting some sound clips on the blog later on, once I’ve figured all this wordpress stuff out and gone through all of our media. We talked about what bands, books, movies and video games they are into and what kind of things they do after school. Erica enjoys reading, writing and theatre while the boys enjoyed pick-up sports games, video games and movies. We talked about some services or programs they might like to see here at the library and we all brainstormed a few new ideas:
-“Know YOUR Rights” Workshop
-Teen Music Jam
Dustin also brought up an idea to put a playground outside the library, which in seeing some of these young adults trying to sit still seems like a good idea. But not a second later his peer told him that could never happen, there would never be a playground at the library, it was impossible. It has been interesting the last week and a half observing some of the students that come into the library. A lot of them have nothing to do or no where to go but come here, here to the Library, a place that is seemingly so counter to what so many of these teens say they would rather be doing. With all the over saturation of multi-media in our lives these days it’s no wonder that most kids find it nearly impossible to find the time or the motivation or even the desire to read a book.
But I do find comfort in the fact that young people feel that they can come to library, a place where youths are not only tolerated but welcomed, a place where their potential is encouraged and embraced, where they can foster their intellectual and curious minds, explore their imaginations and their own fantasies. I rest easy knowing I’m now part of a team of people dedicated to helping this community of young people. Because it is so tough being a young person, from the cliques and peer pressure of school, to having to deal with parents who might not even be able to be there because of work, to the demons that torment our own young hearts and minds. I rest easy knowing that maybe I helped you all rest a little bit easier if only for a few short hours at the Keene Public Library. So thank you.
By the way…
The aim of AmeriCorps Vista is to provide the community with self-sustaining volunteer based programming and organizations. Plus Time NH and The Keene Public Library have signed a three year contract, at the end of which, these programs should be in place. I’m the year 1 Vista, along with Dan, and our main goal is to build the foundation of self-sustaining programs. The library has given me goals and objectives but I like to try to fit in my own as well. Since the first day I set foot in this Library and Heberton Hall, I’ve had one dream all along, and that dream is slowly becoming clearer and clearer by the day. Today that dream is still just an idea but, today I sat down and I put that idea on paper:
Heberton Hall Restoration and Public Use Plan
My Goal: To make Heberton Hall 100% operational (in it’s entirety: basement, 1st, 2nd and 3rd floors), usable to the public as the City of Keene and the Monadnock Region’s Free Arts and Technologies Center.
The Free Arts and Technologies Center would work to complement the library’s resources and passive programs with showcases of the Public’s works of art and to also supplement these resources and programs with active volunteer-based Arts and Technologies programs, classes and events. And all for free.
“Impossible” Erica said when I told her of my idea today. Impossible. Now there’s a scary word. Especially, coming from someone so young. I thought this was the library, where books were explored through your imagination, a land where anything is possible. I shudder to think that the future might seem so bleak to our youth that impossibilities lay at the corner of every street and on the tips of every tongue in this land we’ve decided is so different from our dreams, a land we call “reality.” Our dreams are big, else they would not be dreams, but they are not unattainable, not unreachable, not impossible. I don’t dream big because I need to do a lot of work in order to attain my dream, I do, but that’s not why I dream big. I dream big because I need a lot of people in order to attain my dream. And with you, my community, that is possible, it has always been possible and it will always be possible.
Don’t worry you can do anything you dream,
Michael M. Soldati