Rockford Public Library is encouraging all Rockfordians to visit the Hamburger Helper site www.myhometownhelper.com and voice their support for a library grant to fund a renovated Young Adult Area at the Main Library. If awarded, the grant would give the library $15,000 to create an informal, welcoming space for young adults that offers access to technology, specialized programs and an expanded collection.
“Our Young Adult audience is one of our fastest growing user groups, yet we have relatively little targeted to their needs,” said Fay Muhammad, Associate Director of Rockford Public Library. “Libraries in general tend to focus on the needs of small children and adults, forgetting that the young adult phase of life is a critical and unique development stage.”
The Young Adult Advisory Board, a group of teen volunteers who work with Rockford Public Library administration and staff to tailor programs and services for teens, highlighted the need for a “space” in the library dedicated to teens.
“They need a place to gather—a place to study together, talk, hang out, whatever,” elaborated Heaether Venetucci-Johnson, Young Adult Librarian at Rockford Public Library. “We want to create that space and offer programs and services that make it even more attractive. You’ll never hear parents say they’re concerned because their kid likes the library too much.”
To improve the library’s chance of being awarded the grant, supporters can add positive comments to the online application by visiting the Hamburger Helper ‘My Hometown Helper’ site and use the “Find a Project” button to locate the RPL grant. The more support—the better our odds.
“Rockford has a history of getting behind grass roots efforts and this is one of those opportunities for individuals to make a big difference,” encouraged Frank Novak, Executive Director of Rockford Public Library. “We need this grant to make this project happen and we need your support.”
About the Library
The Rockford Public Library, founded in 1872 as the second library in Illinois, currently has six facilities, including the Main Library and five Branch Libraries. The Rockford Public Library’s mission is to enhance community life and development by informing, educating, entertaining, and providing cultural enrichment to all people of all ages by collecting information to address the diverse interests of our dynamic community.