“Ford’s interactive display allows library visitors, many of them homeless, to express themselves anonymously. Panels hanging from the ceiling ask visitors ‘What do you need? What can you give?’ Paper, pens, and a drop box allow visitors to answer. Ford periodically empties the box and pins the responses on the five panels in the display.
She’s been surprised by what people have said. The vast majority didn’t ask for money or housing or food — they asked for empathy.”
“During a 100-day challenge that ended Nov. 8, a coalition of 30 public, private and nonprofit groups set the ambitious goal of moving 150 young people from homelessness to more stable situations. But they exceeded their benchmark by finding housing and/or employment for 236 local teens and young adults.”
“It’s like if you don’t go into an area that’s poor, you don’t understand or appreciate the area that’s poor,” City Councilman John Garland, a native Roanoker, said during the kickoff meeting at the Jackson Park Library in Southeast Roanoke.
“For the past eight years, [librarian] Mr. Nembhard has turned the shelter’s day care room or its dimly lighted office into an intimate library, tapping into the imaginations of transient children with the hope of making reading books a constant in their lives.”
“The biggest challenge in an era of increasing inequality in income and wealth is the widening gulf between children growing up in strong, economically secure families within thriving communities and children who are not. Although African-American and Latino children continue to fall disproportionately into the latter group, a greater share of children of all racial and ethnic groups are facing conditions that can impede their long-term success.” Kids Count Data Book 2014