Save the Providence Library Children’s Specialists

[ 4 ] February 4, 2008 |

Fox Point LibraryI have always loved the library — a safe, free place to access an abundance of books, movies, and music of all genres. But once I had my children, the library quickly became more than just a place to check out items with my blue card. It became a regular hangout for our family. From when my boys were babies, the library provided a place for them to play no matter the weather outside. I always welcomed a change of scenery and a safe place for them to roam. My boys enjoyed the Cradle to Crayons program (for ages 1-3), with its toys, projects, and singing, and I loved seeing other adults and the validation and support we gave each other as we all were stumbling through the challenges of parenthood.

Since my boys were born, I can’t count the number of books, movies, CDs, and special children’s programs my boys and I have enjoyed at the library. And if it had a coffee bar, I would have even less reasons to leave.

Rochambeau Library

The librarians and children’s specialists are an integral part of this community. They are the storytellers and the friendly faces our children have come to know and trust. Our neighborhood library is the Rochambeau Branch, where the librarians know us by name, but when we visit the Fox Point and the downtown branches, the librarians there make my kids feel special as well. Many times they have gone out their way to find a book my son was searching for or helped track down something pertaining to their obsession of the day — from cows to nutcrackers to pirates, and everything in between.

Some of you may already know that the Providence Public Library (PPL) is currently planning to lay off seven branch children’s specialists in March. The impact of these projected layoffs means services at the small branches will be drastically reduced, existing staff will be left to deal with the basic tasks of managing books, and as a result, the children’s programming will suffer. The impact on our kids means no more Homework Help programs, no more Story Time, no Summer Reading program. Even if you do not use all of these services, think of the impact on kids in our community who do.

If you are a Providence resident and want to help save the jobs of the children’s specialists, write a letter to the mayor and your city council representative. One of the librarians has kindly provided a letter here for you to download and modify as you see fit.

– Send the letter addressed to the mayor to: (Letter)
Mayor David N. Cicilline
Providence City Hall
25 Dorrance Street, Providence, RI 02903
Phone: (401) 421-7740

Locate the address of your city council member. (Letter)

– Download a fact sheet.

Category: activities: indoor, baby, books / stories

Anisa Raoof

about the author ()

Anisa Raoof is the publisher of She combines being a mom with her experience as an artist, designer, psych researcher and former co-director of the Providence Craft Show to create the go-to spot for families in Rhode Island and beyond. She loves using social media to connect parents with family-related businesses and services and promoting ways for parents to engage offline with their kids. Anisa believes in the power of working together and loves to find ways to collaborate with others. An online enthusiast, still likes to unplug often by reading books and magazines, drawing, learning to knit, making pop-up books with her two sons and listening to records with her husband.

Comments (4)

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  1. Brenda says:

    Part of the problem is with the city funding, and another part is with the PPL Administration. They pay themselves generously while laying off staff. I’d write a letter to them as well–they seem sensitive to scrutiny.

    Dale Thompson, Director
    Providence Public Library
    150 Empire Street
    Providence 02903

  2. StephD says:

    We are new to the area, what is the PPL Admin? We will most definitely being sending letters to both places.

  3. Anisa Raoof Anisa says:

    PPL stands for Providence Public Library

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