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Literacy Coalition News
September/October 2014


Campbell Conversations on Adult Literacy

Continuing its series on poverty in the Syracuse region, this edition of the Campbell Conversations focused on an under-studied and under-appreciated aspect of the problem: adult literacy. Every week Grant Reeher, Director of the Campbell Public Affairs Institute at Syracuse University, leads a conversation and his guests include people from central New York – writers, politicians, activists, public officials, and business professionals whose work affects the public life of the community – as well as nationally-prominent figures visiting the region to talk about their work.

Marsha Tait, Executive Director of Literacy CNY, left, and Peter Waite, Vice-President of ProLiteracy, center, speak with Campbell Conversations host Grant Reeher.

Coinciding with International Literacy Day, Reeher interviewed the Executive Vice-President of ProLiteracy, Peter Waite, and the Executive Director of Literacy CNY, Marsha Tait. Together they discuss how literacy and economic challenges interact.

Listen to the full interview on WRVO here »

Read the full interview in the Syracuse New Times here »

Stories of the Season tickets now available with proceeds to be shared with our Literacy Champions!

The Literacy Coalition of Onondaga County and iHeartMedia (formerly Clear Channel Media + Entertainment) are pleased to announce the 2nd Annual "Stories of the Season" on Friday, November 28th from 5:30-9:00 pm. Enjoy the City of Syracuse's Holiday Tree Lighting in Clinton Square from the warmth of the Clinton Exchange Building with our Honorary Chairs ~ The Family of Rick & Margaret Shirtz. We're looking forward to another sold-out event!

We're also excited to again partner with the following Literacy Champions who have the opportunity to raise awareness about their programs, sell tickets and keep the ticket proceeds: Child Care Solutions; Children's Consortium; InterFaith Works; LiteracyCNY; Friends of the Central Library; Partners in Learning/MANOS; Friends of the Rosamond Gifford Zoo; and WCNY's Family Literacy Program.

Stories of the Season

Each of our Literacy Champions provide outstanding literacy and dual-generation (family literacy) programming to families in our community, especially our Imagination Library enrollees. Ticket price is $75 per person, $125 per couple and children under 15 are FREE! This includes: live music, open bar, a supervised children's activity area, Santa, carving stations, pasta bar, desserts, a silent auction and a warm place to watch the lighting of the Clinton Square holiday tree.

Make your reservations today at http://stories2014.eventbrite.com. If you have questions or comments or would like to purchase tickets over the phone, please contact: Kimberly Kemp at 315-214-2878 or kkemp@unitedway-cny.org.

What Works: Have you stopped by a Little Library near you?

By Teri Weaver, The Post Standard

SYRACUSE, N.Y. - Bob Kratz wanted to meet his neighbors. A downtown group wanted to put a library within walking distance of the neighborhood it served. A North Side family simply wanted to get a handle on its own, bulging book problem.

A Little Free Library was the answer for all.

Little Free Libraries, or LFLs, are a worldwide network of book-sharing sites. The concept is simple: Put a weatherproof box outside, near a sidewalk or somewhat public area. Stock it full of books, a couple of dozen or so. Wait for people to stop, browse and borrow.

Maarten Jacobs, of Syracuse University's Near West Side Initiative, shows one of three Little Free Libraries near downtown Syracuse

Even Syracuse University's Near West Side Initiative found a large solution in the little boxes. The neighborhood's closest library is Mundy, a long walk across several blocks, on the other side of South Geddes Street.

"For a lot of people living on this side of the library, it felt just a bit too far," said Maarten Jacobs, the director of the initiative. With the neighborhood's help, Jacobs' staff cleaned up some empty phone kiosks and held a book drive. Nearly three years later, the inventory in the boxes still turns over every couple of weeks. The initiative plans to expand with more boxes later this year or in early 2015, he said.


Worldwide, thousands. So many that one Google map can't bookmark them all. Kratz, who registered this summer, is No. 16,059. In the Syracuse-area, there are at least seven.

Read the full article on syracuse.com here »

Learn more about Little Free Libraries »

What Works is a yearlong campaign to partner with the community to identify those efforts solving our toughest problems. Who's making a difference? Let us know at whatworks@syracuse.com.


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