March 8, 2009

Día Champions

Pat wants to recognize outstanding 2009 Día Champions. On this blog,throughout March and April, we'll introduce you to some outstanding Día literacy advocates. Are there librarians, educators, or community people you'd like Pat to recognize? Use the comments section to let us know.

Flo Trujillo, Youth Services Coordinator at the Farmington Public Library (NM) and the state Afterschool Ambassador (an Afterschool Alliance program), is our first Día Champion. Here she describes her library's Día festivities
In San Juan County the Farmington Public Library will host the Día celebration on April 30th with a tailgate party. It is not mandatory but toddler through elementary participants will be asked to bring a book wrapped as a gift. When the music starts the books are exchanged until the music stops. Through donations, everyone will leave with a book on that day! Middle school students will participate through 21st Century, by making available an activity for the toddlers and elementary students. Middle and High school students will participate in a Poetry workshop and Slam. High school students can join the celebration of the Blended Zine release party – a magazine published by teens for teens. Families can enjoy a game of Frisbee with the Navajo, Spanish, Italian and French words for El día de los niños/El día de los libros displayed on the Frisbee to celebrate the multicultural celebration of Día.
As an incentive for libraries and community centers to register their activities with ALSC's national registry site, the New Mexico Library Association is giving five $100 awards to random selected libraries and community centers who register.

Flo knows "school and public libraries are an essential resource In these economic times – they provide a safe place for youth and inspire youth to learn using up-to-date technology for homework help. But, the celebration is not only for school and public libraries… it is for the whole community! Join an organization that is celebrating Día and develop a new partnership or volunteer your time to help organize an event for youth."

In her role as Afterschool Ambassor, Flo is uniquely positioned to promote Día throughout the state. She "believe(s) that with our new partnerships, next year will be bigger and better! Investing in programs for youth during afterschool and out of school time strengthens our community!"