Once we heard that the county library system had planned a new branch in Roseland before the budget cuts hit, our interest in the area was confirmed. Normally we would consider residents of urban areas to have ready access to libraries but let’s face it: low-income families often don’t have an easy time getting around town. Without a place that’s really convenient to reach, plenty of kids will be going without.
Enter the Sonoma County Free Bookmobile. We scoured the event listings for likely spots and decided to visit a craft fair at the Southwest Youth Center on West Avenue. The attendance there, however, was disappointing for our purposes; fortunately we had spotted a flyer for a community Christmas party planned for that same day at the Roseland Fire Department. We popped over to Burbank Avenue and found the organizers to be warm in their welcome. They estimated that hundreds of kids would be interested in the books and they were right! Sometimes these things just come together, and it seems the Bookmobile is often blessed with a little luck just when we need it.
It turned out to be our best outreach to children yet – we gave away 423 books to 136 boys and girls. Many took some for their brothers and sisters. It was a delightful day, made even better by our introduction to Jo Anne Cohn of the Southwest Area Community Advisory Board, and Ed Buonaccorsi of the Santa Rosa Recreation, Parks & Community Services Department. No doubt we can continue our work in the area by partnering with these new friends on future events.
As you can see from our schedule (don’t forget you can click the link below the “Recent Events” list to see all of our past giveaways), we’ve been gleefully busy. We also have some great stuff in the works behind the scenes, including sponsorship by a new group, renewed commitment from current partners, and a fabulous new volunteer named Carrie Hess. Carrie has been a huge help at many of our latest stops, including the generous donation of custom bookmarks she makes for the kids. We’ll get some pictures up soon of these beautiful works of art, as well as details of the building of the Bookmobile support team. So, as always, stay tuned…