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March 2, 2009

Grants at the Library

Last month we mentioned some successful grant applications here at the Library. Here is bit more information on our GRANT (Getting Results Amidst Needy Times!) program.

Through our persistent search for appropriate opportunities, OCLS received nearly $400,000 in grant funds for the current fiscal year. One of the funded projects, funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is our Citizenship Inspired program. Citizenship Inspired prepares legal immigrants for the written and oral exam to become a U.S. citizen. Classes meet weekly for 6 consecutive weeks of In-person classes supplemented by online review modules. We now have 3 new citizens who are graduates of our program. The program is so successful that we have increased the number of classes and locations.

The Library believes that the children in our community are SuperStarz!. Through Library Services and Technology Act funds, the Library is providing programming at 7 community youth centers. Weekly, library staff provide FCAT and academic skill-building sessions to students in 3rd - 5th grade.

Through $15,000 in funding provided by Entertainment Arts (EA), the Library just completed Edu-Gaming: Extreme Technology for Teens! Participants learned how gaming can be educational as well as fun and took classes on game creation. A game creation contest was held and judged by representatives from EA.

Other successful projects include support for a healthy lifestyle through Fit for Life programming, sound financial planning for Hispanic residents through our Smart Investing programs sponsored by FINRA, and support for family literacy through our Prime Time programs, funded by the Florida Humanities Council.

The Library would like to thank all of our funders and our staff whose creativity and energy make these successful grant programs possible. Through this funding we are able to connect our changing community to the evolving world of ideas, information and technology and bring even greater value to the residents of our community.

Mary Anne Hodel

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