Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Hmong New Year Celebration and WoW! Is There

Between Christmas and New Year’s Day, thousands gather at the Big Fresno Fairgrounds for the Hmong International New Year Celebration.

A festival of music, dancing, food, history, a beauty pageant, and meeting old friends and making new ones, it’s a great place to promote library services.

The Fresno County Public Library is represented with a booth near the outdoor stage, and the WoW! (WithOut Walls) Library is part of it, making library cards.

The Hmong people of Laos were recruited by Americans during the Vietnam War. After the war, they were persecuted by the ruling regime. Many escaped and became refugees. Today, the San Joaquin Valley is home to the second-largest concentration of Hmong outside of Southeast Asia, and the Hmong New Year celebration in Fresno is the largest in the world.

Festivities began the day after Christmas, with Terrance Mc Arthur of WoW!, Gaoneng Lee, and Vincent Petrelli representing the FCPL. Terrance brought the laptop, hotspot, and barcode reader needed for card-making. Vincent had lightning-fast fingers for entering application data. Gaoneng had the Hmong language skills to explain library services to the more than 140 people who stopped at the booth to talk on that day. WoW! librarians and other library personnel will be at the fairgrounds to provide services during the celebration. 

One of the features of the 2016 celebration is a series of exhibits on the Hmong culture, its part in the CIA-sponsored war, the migration to the USA, and how the people have survived and thrived in a new land over the past 40 years.

 If you go to the 2016 Hmong New Year Celebration, look for the FCPL booth at the north end of the fairgrounds, west of the main stage. We hope to see you there!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Citizenship Corners

Did you know Fresno County is home to tens of thousands of Lawful Permanent Residents who are eligible for Naturalization?  The Fresno County Public Library, in partnership with the Central Valley Networks for Integrating New Americans and the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, is proud to present its new Citizenship Corners.  

You can find a Citizenship Corner at the following branches: Central, Kerman, Mendota, Orange Cove, Parlier and Selma.

Citizenship Corners are a dedicated library space where New Americans can fill their information needs about becoming a U.S. Citizen as well as find financial self-help information and California AB60 Driver’s License information.

Free-to-take information includes civics test preparation materials, N-400 form and instructions, pamphlets on immigration fraud, USCIS benefits, BIA accredited and recognized organization lists, AB60 information, and financial literacy information.

You’ll need a library card to take home the Citizenship Toolkit, Civics questions flashcards, and vocabulary flashcards.  There are also some handy reference books available to check out.

In addition to the physical locations of the Citizenship Corners, FCPL has also added information on its webpage.

On December 4th, a ribbon cutting ceremony at the Central branch commemorated the opening of the Citizenship Corners.
 There were representatives from several of the Central Valley Network for Integrating New Americans organizations, including The Maddy Institute, the Fresno Adult School and Mi Familia Vota.  Speakers at the event included Library Manager Susan Mann, USCIS Section Chief Lynn Feldman and CV-NINA representative, from Mi Familia Vota, Samuel Molina.  Also in attendance were representatives from Senator Boxer’s office and County Administrative Officer’s office.

L to R: Lisa Agao, Fresno Adult School; Lynn Feldman, USCIS Section Chief; Samuel Molina, Mi Familia Vota; Lance Tullis, CAO Jean Rousseau’s office; Susan Mann, Fresno County Public Library; Ahmeen Khan, Senator Boxer’s office

Monday, December 21, 2015

Why Pop-Up Libraries Pop Up--Part Three

What does it take to make a pop-up library? Pop-up libraries are able to go where no bookmobile has gone before, from out in fields to inside buildings. Pop-up services need to be planned and prepared before they go out in public.

It's like a whole library in the back of one Prius.  


You Need...


Library Personnel--Librarians and Library Assistants help the public with services and decisions. Sometimes, there are community volunteers, and they can be a lot of help.
How many volunteers does it take to assemble a table?
Laptop computer(s) (with software that lets you make library cards and check out books outside of the library).

Hotspot (Portable Wi-Fi connection), Barcode Scanner (for checkouts, checkins, and checking up on stuff), Receipt Printer (if a plug-in is available), and Due Date Reminders (if a plug-in isn't available).

Library Cards, Card Applications (We want more people to be able to use our libraries).

Tables, Shelves,  Chairs, Floor Cover/Cushions (for storytime events), Canopy (Just in case).

30-200 library books/DVDs/Books on CD (for checkout, so you can take things home for a few weeks).

Pop-up libraries include a wide variety of books and media. Check it out, then check them out. 
Flyers/giveaways (Library information, stickers, buttons, pens, bags)

Tally Sheet (So we know how many people we talk to, how many library cards we make, and how many items people check out)

Transport Dolly (to carry more stuff in less trips)
Here are the building blocks that make up a pop-up library.
Here is how it all fits together for a Community Pop-Up, outdoors.
This is a Senior Pop-Up, indoors.
Do you have an event or place that needs a pop-up? Fill out our WoW! Pop-Up Request Form.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Why Pop-Up Libraries Pop Up--Part Two

The Fresno County Public Library has two pop-up programs--the Senior Pop-Up Library and the Community Pop-Up Library--bringing services to events and people that might not be able to use a regular library building. Around the world are other pop-ups, too. Here are some of the different ways books and people can get together....

 Colorado--Pedal-powered library.
Texas--Supermarket storytime.
  New York City--Seats and shelves.

England--Old booths, new libraries. 
 France--Books on the beach.
Mongolia--A pop-up camel?
 Fresno--Community Pop-Up.
Fresno--Senior Pop-Up
Pop-up libraries come in many shapes and sizes, but they always have exciting things to see, hear, or read. The FCPL Pop-Up Libraries are loaded with cool stuff. Watch for them.


Monday, December 14, 2015

Why Pop-Up Libraries Pop Up - Part One

Pop-Up Libraries

A pop-up library uses technology to provide library services in remote locations. It can be indoors or outdoors, be a card-table set-up or resemble a full-service library. A pop-up library can provide many services in many combinations, including:

·         Making library cards—The first step in library use is getting a library card. Library software and wi-fi access at an event means you don't have to go to a library building to get a library card.

·        Library checkout/checkin—The materials brought to an event fit the occasion: children’s books to a summer-reading kickoff, cookbooks and books on plants at a gardening center, and more. With a library card, you can check out and take home books, CDs, and DVDs.
·         Demonstration of library resources—with an Internet-connected laptop, tablet, or a smartphone, the library home page and online resources are a click away.
·         Explanation of library policies—Many people are surprised to learn that most items they check out do not have to be returned to the branch where they were borrowed, that our online databases are free, and you can get e-books for most devices...free. 
·         Placing holds—You want a book we didn't bring? Request items and pick them up at a local branch. It's easy to do with remote computer access.
·         Storytimes—Library staff love to read stories to groups of children. Our storytimes model early literacy techniques that families can use.

·         Crafts—Simple craft projects attract children and adults.

·         Flyers and brochures—They promote library events and services, providing a reminder of what the public has seen and heard.

Today's technology helps the library take its services into the community. The Pop-Up library uses technology and library know-how.

Stay tuned for more posts on Pop-Up Library services, why they are done, and how a Pop-Up Library is planned.

If you would like the WoW! WithOut Walls Library to Pop-Up at your event in Fresno County, fill out or request form-  WoW! Pop-Up Request Form 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

EMQ Families First Holiday Event

EMQ Families First held its holiday crafts event at the Boys and Girls Club of Fresno.  WoW! attended and introduced information about library services for children and teens.  Making new library cards (for many their first one!) is the first step to lifetime learning.

Terrance and Kenny getting ready!
Shannon explaining library services 
Even Librarians can Zoomba!

Kenny making library cards

Teens especially are excited about the upcoming grand opening (January 9, 2016 @ 1pm) of the Betty Rodriguez branch (located at southeast corner of Cedar and Shields) which will feature a "maker space."  "Maker spaces can be any area where people gather to make and create. These spaces often include 3-D printers.  In maker spaces, people share supplies, skills, and ideas, and often work together on projects."  http://library-maker-culture.weebly.com/what-are-they.html

"You have more than just books?!" questioned one child.  Many are surprised how many of our resources are available from your mobile device.

Our newest online service to get a "WoW!" is  Freegal, which lets you download 3 songs a week (to keep) and 3 hours of streaming- all for free with your library card.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

WoW! in Washington, D.C.

The view from our meeting room…
Our meeting room – The Indian Treaty Room 
WoW! Librarian Michelle Gordon is Fresno County Public Library’s representative to the Central Valley Network for Integrating New Americans (CV-NINA).  NINA is a technical assistance grant funded by the Department of Education, spearheaded by the White House Task Force on New Americans.  There are five networks nationwide that received this technical assistance grant.  CV-NINA has been involved in numerous community events over the last couple of years.  This past June, CV-NINA organized and held a small Naturalization Oath ceremony at Fresno State.

Arriving outside the EEOB:

On October 29th and 30th, the five networks gathered in Washington, DC.  Included in this gathering was a White House Briefing for over 30 federal employees representing multiple agencies including: the Department of Education, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS), Department of Labor, Institute of Museum and Library Services, Department of Health & Human Services, White House Domestic Policy Council and White House National Economic Council.
Liset Caudillo from Proteus, Michelle Gordon from FCPL, Ana Melendez from The Maddy Institute, Lisa Agao from FAS
Lisa Agao of the Fresno Adult School
Before her flight back to Fresno, Michelle managed to spend a little time at the Library of Congress.  She got her Reader’s Card for the LoC and used it to enter into the main reading room at the library.
The Library of Congress
On Display at the LoC was this letter from Thomas Jefferson to John Adams where he makes the statement “I cannot live without books…”

Friday, November 20, 2015

WoW! Outreach at Poverello House

The WoW! team is always looking for ways to promote library services that help the citizens of Fresno.  The Poverello House welcomed us to their outreach, where we shared information on how the library can serve them.  Most asked about computer classes, and how they could learn new skills, especially needed for the workplace.  Some branch locations provide free computer classes, including one on one instruction.  Click here to view current schedule of classes offered in branches.  The library provides free computer & internet use; where you can use essential tools such as email, prepare a resume, and search for a job online.  If you need help with your job search, check out Fresno Library’s Job and Careers Services online, that guides you through the steps.  

Kenny promoting the library's resources!