Is the recession making you look for new skills, job-seeking strategies or just a little diversion to take your mind off things? How is the Plainfield Public Library helping?
Tell your story in an essay and become eligible for prizes. In 250 words or fewer, explain "How the Plainfield Public Library has helped me through these difficult times." Entries must include the writer's name, address, telephone number and be typewritten or printed double-spaced on letter-size paper. All entries must be received by 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 13 and will become property of the library.
The library's Circulation staff will judge the entries and winners will be announced by Monday, Dec. 7. First prize will be a $50 Visa card, with cards for $25 and $15 for second and third place.
Library Director Joseph Da Rold
said resources for library patrons include free computer classes on Tuesdays for those who sign up. The schedule is on the library's web site
along with a lot of other information.
"Other resources for those suddenly laid off include DIY books (do-it-yourself) for fixing up the house, gardening books, and self-help books for those who need a spiritual recharge. For those who did not get cash for their clunkers, we have scads of car-repair books on the shelf and online. We also work with SBA (Small Business Administration) and can set up interviews here at the library for anyone who wishes to talk to someone about starting up a new business," Da Rold said in answer to an e-mailed question on what the library offers.
Job market analysts say volunteering not only keeps the mind sharp and expands networks, it can also lead to a career when economic conditions improve. Da Rold said the library welcomes new volunteers into its Adult Literacy, Information Technology and Local History departments.
"In 2008, volunteers gave nearly 8,000 hours to our library!" he said.
The library has also submitted two Community Development Block Grant proposals to create a Job Search Center with a computer training room, Da Rold said. Grant awards will not be announced until Spring; if the proposals are funded, remodeling will begin next Fall. Meanwhile, he said, library staff is excited about initiating some programs as soon as possible, including a free series of job search lectures.