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Around Town: Capital plans; the power of literacy – Palo Alto Online

Posted: November 18, 2019 at 8:46 pm


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On Nov. 18, the Palo Alto City Council plans to add two years and $204,000 to its agreement with Townsend Public Affairs, which lobbies for the city in Sacramento. File photo by Veronica Weber.

In the latest Around Town column, find how what issues Palo Alto City Council members want the city's legislative advocate to focus on and a local nonprofit recently recognized by the Library of Congress.

CAPITAL PLANS ... Palo Alto's elected leaders have plenty of gripes when it comes to Sacramento, from desires to see more state funding for railroad improvements to concerns about housing bills that may diminish local control over land-use decisions. The job of communicating these concerns to state legislators falls to Niccolo De Luca, a legislative advocate with the lobbying firm Townsend Public Affairs. On Nov. 18, the City Council is scheduled to add two years and $204,000 to the city's agreement with Townsend, bringing the contract total to $799,000. Last Tuesday, De Luca came to Palo Alto to provide an update to the council's Policy and Services Committee and hear from local lawmakers about their Sacramento priorities. For Councilman Greg Tanaka, the overarching priority remains securing funding for grade separation, the redesign of railroad crossings so that rail tracks don't intersect with local roads. Last year, De Luca worked with Assemblyman Marc Berman on including some funding for design work in the state budget. The proposal didn't advance, though De Luca assured the committee that they made some headway on securing funding for grade separation. "Obviously we didn't get to the finish line," De Luca said. "If this was marathon, it would be mile 24." Tanaka suggested that by keeping the list of legislative demands small, the city may have better luck in getting the grade-separation funding. Tanaka noted that the downtown Palo Alto Caltrain station is the second busiest in the entire system. Councilwoman Lydia Kou lobbied for a more ambitious list of demands, including supporting legislation to audit major transportation agencies such as the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority, Caltrain and BART. The city has been working with Townsend since 2014. City Manager Ed Shikada made a case in a new report for retaining the relationship. While recognizing the "significant expenditures," Shikada argued that the discontinuation of the firm's services would make it "significantly more difficult to establish effective relationships when needed to respond to concerns with pending legislation, and similarly more difficult to advance the City's funding and policy initiatives."

THE POWER OF LITERACY ... Redwood City-based nonprofit Bring Me a Book is one of 15 organizations honored by the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program for demonstrating the best practices in promoting literacy. The local organization was founded by Palo Alto resident Judy Koch, who recently received the award at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. with Michaelin Reamy, president of its affiliate organization in Franklin County, Florida. A former English teacher, Koch launched Bring Me a Book to provide books to underserved children. Its program includes BookBuddies, where volunteers read books aloud to preschool and kindergarten students; Book Cubbies, where parents and children team up to decorate a book cubby at school; and book giveaways.

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Around Town: Capital plans; the power of literacy - Palo Alto Online

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November 18th, 2019 at 8:46 pm

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College community gains access to The Washington Post Online – Scarlet and Black

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By MJ Oldoldmadel@grinnell.edu

The Grinnell Library recently bought an institutional license to the Washington Post website, meaning that any device connected to the Grinnell College Wi-FI can access the Washington Post dating back to 2005 (not including the crosswords and other special features), no login required.

The large papers like the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post have been reluctant to have a purchase model that included academic institutions. Its hard times for newspapers and theyve been trying to get by, said Kevin Engel, head of Kistle Science Library.

[The Washington Post] didnt put out an educational license until August of this year and initially they came in with a very high price, much too high. Initially the price would have been $7,000 a year; now we get it for $2,000 a year and were locked in for three years, Engel said.

The Washington Post was free for people at academic institutions until November 2017. The library chose to purchase online access based on student demand. Previously students could only read paper copies in Burling. The paper newspapers in Burling that get the most use are the Des Moines Register and the Wall Street Journal, which are both delivered daily.

The Center for Research Libraries (CRL), of which the Grinnell library is a member, negotiated the initial offer with the Washington Post.

It was just a matter of contacting CRL saying were interested, they got a quote from the Washington Post for us, we talked to the Washington Post directly, did a little negotiation on price and then it was just paperwork, licensing and so on. And then they take our IP addresses and set up the access, Engel said. We were probably one of the first colleges in the nation under the new pricing structure because they were figuring out their forms with us.

The library decides what services to buy based on student demand and the cost-per-use. For example, the New York Times online costs $7,950 a year, but the number of people who use it bring the cost-per-use down to three and a half cents.

The great world of newspapers and things is a Wild West because everyones trying to make money in a changing time, so there are lots of different offers and access methods and were hoping to provide the campus with the broadest access and the best access we can, Engel said.

Foreign Affairs, to which Grinnell also has a site license, was another frequently requested publication. The complete version of publications is now the digital version. Theres a lot of content in Foreign Affairs that never makes it into the print magazine. And so, to get that stuff for classes, we went with the site license, Engel said.

The library also buys access to streaming video and music. Some film and video databases Grinnellians have access to include Films On Demand, Filmmakers Library Online, Naxos Video and Kanopy. Naxos Music has classical and international music.

Streaming video is a very hot area right now, and faculty are incorporating film in their classes more and more, Engel said. Everyone would like to have an academic model for Netflixthats the holy grailbut Netflix does not sell that because they make too much money from individuals.

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November 18th, 2019 at 8:46 pm

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Vote for access to news, information | Staff Columnists – Grand Island Independent

Posted: November 17, 2019 at 1:48 pm


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The topic of my last column was Time to vote for better eBook access.

I wish I had better news to tell you about eBook publisher giant Macmillans embargo on libraries. But this nations library leaders are still working to provide you with better eBook access and it is our hope to persuade Macmillan that libraries and publishers have been and should be on the same side when it comes to access.

As you might remember, this column was based on a number of news reports including an article from the online publication Slate, Why Angry Librarians Are Going to War With Publishers Over E-Books: Inside an Appropriately Quiet Revolt in its Sept. 11 edition. (https://slate.com/business/2019/

09/e-book-library-publisher-buying-controversy-petition.html)

In the meantime, another series of news reports tell the shocking story of how a librarys routine procurement of the digital edition of the New York Times was thwarted. One such account, Dissing access to the New York Times, Citrus County commissioners embarrass Florida comes from the Tampa Bay Times (https://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/2019/11/08/dissing-access-

to-the-new-york-times-citrus-county-commissioners-embarrass-florida/)

We live in very interesting times on a great number of fronts, and access to legitimate news sources is essential in our democracy with libraries at the forefront. Im fond of quoting Lady Bird Johnsons assertion that perhaps no place in any community is so totally democratic as the town library. The only entrance requirement is interest.

These days more of you are likely to come in for digital materials including eBooks and news resources. When our efforts to provide you with these resources is thwarted, what does that say about our democracy?

As part of these very interesting times we approach the bearers of news differently. One persons trash is another persons treasure used to be reserved for your uncles favorite moose lamp, but these days is how most of us assess real news from fake news through different lenses.

So where do libraries stand on this divide? As close to the middle as humanly possible through a sound Collection Development policy to provide information, serve leisure needs, contribute to education, encourage the development of reading skills and habits, develop an educated workforce and society, and further democratic traditions.

This policy (https://www.gilibrary.org/home/showdocument?id14746) contains a number of criteria for collection development, the first of which are needs and interests of the librarys users and anticipated users; value of the material for information, recreation, or education; contemporary significance or permanent value; accuracy and authority. The overarching principle of our policy is embodied in what is called the Library Bill of Rights (https://www.gilibrary.org/home/showdocument?id8563), and the section most relevant to the issue in Citris County, Fla., is:

Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.

How that is accomplished is a matter for every individual library to determine with the strength of its board of trustees and staff. Not every news source can be placed on library shelves. Along with The Grand Island Independent, we subscribe to the print editions of several Nebraska newspapers including the Lincoln Journal Star and Omaha World-Herald. Nationally, we are soon picking up the Denver Post (replacing the Kansas City Star due to publisher/vendor restrictions) and we have Barrons, New York Times, USA Today and the Wall Street Journal.

To supplement these print offerings, we subscribe to an online service called Newsbank that provides access to almost 5,500 news sources. But for all sorts of publisher/vendor reasons, many authoritative sources are not available through Newsbank. So as we work out access arrangements within budget constraints, not partisan disapproval, lets continue to vote with libraries to assure access to news information.

Steve Fosselman is the director of the Grand Island Public Library. Email him at SteveF@gilibrary.org.

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Vote for access to news, information | Staff Columnists - Grand Island Independent

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November 17th, 2019 at 1:48 pm

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Stonington Free Library expansion aims to satisfy the need for ‘more’ – The Westerly Sun

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STONINGTON A major milestone was marked in Stonington earlier this month during a ceremonial groundbreaking.

While dozens of people looked on, Allegra Griffiths and Denise Easton co-presidents of the Stonington Free Library's board of trustees together raised a shovel to break ground for an addition to the library, the first step in making the building fully accessible and up to date in its technology.

When the addition is complete, the library on High Street will have a new ramp, new entrance, new elevator and new restrooms on both levels, all in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

There will be better access to all areas of the library, including the children's room, which is on the lower floor, said Library DirectorBelinda de Kay, as she walked through the library recently explaining the expansion plans and discussing the necessity and evolution of libraries.

Additionally, she said, thanks to a $58,805 grant from the Connecticut State Library and the Universal Service Schools and Library Program, the library will install a fiber optic connection to help expand digital services, including upgraded high-speed internet.

"It's been a slow process, but a good process," said a smiling de Kay. "It was slow but it's a process that works. It was important getting opinions. We all worked totally together. Everything we're doing came from community focus groups."

"Now, we have growing pains," she added, still smiling. "And they're wonderful growing pains."

De Kay said that the project began in earnest about four years ago and involved soliciting opinions from patrons of the library and Stonington residents and involving them in the strategic planning. The exercise, in "self-assessment and community engagement," was enlightening, de Kay said, and gave library leaders a blueprint for how to most effectively serve the people of Stonington.

More than 600 people responded to a survey and more than 100 attended six focus groups for in-depth discussions. Throughout that process, library leaders learned that the library "along with the helpful, welcoming staff, is much-loved, and essential to their quality of life."

They also learned that residents wanted and needed more from their library.

Easton said, "The community wanted more access to everything, more programs, services and hours." It turns out, she added, "we are valued now more than ever."

"We are dependent on and grateful for this community," Easton said. "I think about that every day."

De Kay said, "It's been wonderful getting to know people," and wonderful, too, learning how much the library means to people. "In a way we've become a library without walls," she said. "With our wonderful website people have 24 / 7 access, and we have a branch library at the Pawcatuck Neighborhood Center and [one] at Stonington Human Services."

"It's areally nice outreach to our neighbors and a popular volunteer opportunity," de Kay said. "We alsomaintain four Little Free Libraries in and around the Borough, another collaboration with the Stonington Village Association."

Although libraries have changed enormously over the years, de Kay explained as she greeted a regular patron who was seated in a leather chair reading a newspaper in a quiet corner, some things have remained the same.

Yes, people want a place to plug in their laptops so they can sit and work in peace, she said, but there are plenty of people who come to read magazines, books and newspapers, and many more who come to check books out.

"We have a well-cultivated new book collection," de Kay said in her pleasant British accent. "And a 'Golden Oldies' section too."

"The really, really important thing about libraries," she said, "is that all people are welcome here. As long as you don't disturb others, you are welcome and you are treated with respect."

Construction of the addition, on the east side of the building, should take about six months, de Kay said, followed by the refurbishment and renovation of the interior.

G. Donovan Associates Inc., of Lebanon, Conn., is the general contractor, and the architect and interior designer is a West Hartford firm, dewright design LLC.

The interior work, Easton said, will free up an additional 525 square feet of floor space in the existing building, for a total of 1,250 square feet of new usable space. "More flexible" contemporary furniture will also be installed furniture that can be easily folded up to make space for meetings and gatherings.

"I'm very keen on the idea of the second phase and the repurposing part," said de Kay, explaining that the changes will "open it all up." After all, she added, the library is a space open to everyone, and everyone should feel at home.

Although people can become anxious about construction projects and change, de Kay said, they can rest easy about the new addition. "The architect has designed the addition so it will look as if it's always been there."

Easton concurred: "Six months from now, nobody will even notice."

Griffiths, who describes the library as "a lovely place to be involved" said she was thrilled to see tangible signs of progress.

George Sylvestre,who serves as co-chair of the building committee, along with Easton, said, "As a former trustee and past president of the board I am thrilled to see this project becoming a reality."

"It's long overdue," said Micayla Hall, the library's assistant director. "It will help open up the space we have and make us more flexible for the community. Just what a library is for."

"We're just so grateful to everyone for all the collaboration," she added.

"The work being undertaken now will insure that it will be able to welcome anyone who wishes to take advantage of its many offerings, regardless of physical limitations," added Sylvestre.

"And now, we'll have an accessible elevator and new ramp and a new elevator," saidde Kay, "all to improve access for all members of the community."

"It's amazing what you can do," she added. "When you have all sorts of wonderful people working together."

nbfusaro@thewesterlysun.com

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Stonington Free Library expansion aims to satisfy the need for 'more' - The Westerly Sun

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November 17th, 2019 at 1:48 pm

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What spending on social media ads tells us about the General Election – inews

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OpinionEver since Barack Obama mobilised his grass roots support in 2008, Facebook has been the No.1 route to get party messages across

Sunday, 17th November 2019, 11:33 am

During this General Election campaign we are able to monitor the political parties, like never before, as they target voters online with their claims, promises and downright propaganda.

The Facebook Ad Library is a genuine game changer. It sets out on a daily basis just how much each party and pressure group spends advertising on the platform and its sister site Instagram.

i's opinion newsletter: talking points from today

In the past week, the Tories were the biggest party spenders, shelling out 86,023 on 71 ads (from the Conservative Party and Boris Johnson official accounts). Labour spent 43,428 on 183 ads and the Lib Dems 42,400 on a flurry of 1,829 different messages. But the group with the deepest pockets was the anti-Brexit campaign Best for Britain, which invested 84,014.

Since 2008, when Barack Obama mobilised his grass roots support on Facebook to win his way to the White House, this platform has been the key to election victory in America and Britain. Yet parties, lobby groups and foreign actors have been allowed to work there in the shadows.

Failure of the media

Thats partly a failure of the media, which since 2010 has been transfixed by televised debates, which are easier to report on. Its also a consequence of the might of the Silicon Valley companies, which grew so quickly that they could make up their own rules.

For journalists like Joe Tidy, the new Digital Elections Reporter for BBC News, it provides a brilliant resource in monitoring party activities online. It also helps fact-checking organisations, such as the charity Full Fact.

Facebook Ad Library breaks down ad spend according to age group and gender. Tidy notes that the Brexit Party is fully-focused on men over the age of 45, while the Tories are almost ignoring Scotland.

Facebook could be more transparent, revealing data on how parties target by constituency and the personal interests of users, from trade union membership to attending yoga classes, Tidy says.But it's better than Google, where scrutiny of political ad spending requires laborious analysis of complex spreadsheets.

Google Search is another key battlefield, with parties paying to advertise against keywords. Type in Boris Brexit Deal and the top result is an ad for the Brexit Party. There is a battle of the search bar taking place, says Tidy.

We didnt have the Ad Library for the 2017 General Election but it was clear that the Labour Party generated its Corbyn surge on social media, achieving unrivalled engagement in likes and shares for its official posts. But, below the radar, the Conservatives spent bigger on targeted online ads which were largely invisible to the news media, and this helped Theresa May to enter Number Ten.

Tories ahead on all platforms

This time, Tidy says, the Tories are ahead in terms of interactions on all three platforms (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter), according to data given to him by BBC Monitoring, the broadcasters media analysis unit.

Part of this high engagement has come from the the widespread sharing of an official Tory video, 12 Questions with Boris, in which the Prime Minister is followed around by a camera as he goes to make a cup of tea. He compares his Brexit deal to a ready meal (slam it in the microwave), and reveals that he likes Marmite and that he starts his day by taking his dog to do its business.

The wonky production values and oddball answers drew sneering responses from political opponents who likened Johnson to David Brent. But the Conservatives have paid to promote the film on Facebook and it has had more than 5 million views on social media. The Tory campaign is deliberately putting out cheesy or controversial stuff, Tidy believes. Its all about noise.

In the first week of the campaign, Tidy notes, Jeremy Corbyn and Labour dominated Twitter, with 16 of the top 20 most-engaged-with tweets. But Twitter is not where voters are wooed. CEO Jack Dorsey grandly banned political ads on the forum from 22 November, but political spending overwhelmingly goes on Facebook and Google.

Enjoy the new transparency while it lasts.

One area of the Facebook empire that remains opaque to scrutiny is the messaging app WhatsApp. Following pressure from regulators earlier this year, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg suggested his company might become less open and more private, merging WhatsApp with its direct messaging services on Facebook and Instagram to create a giant encrypted network.

Ive got a hunch that this election is the most-enlightened we have ever had and it is possible the most-enlightened we will ever have, says Tidy. By the time we get to the next election a lot of these things are going to happen in private messaging.

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What spending on social media ads tells us about the General Election - inews

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November 17th, 2019 at 1:48 pm

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Library : Promoting Digital Child Dignity From Concept to Action 2017-2019 – Catholic Culture

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by Pope Francis

Pope Francis Address to Participants: Promoting Digital Child Dignity From Concept to Action 2017-2019

Citing dangers to young people living in the digital world, Pope Francis on November 14, 2019, called for action to ensure their protection. He noted the painful experience of the Catholic Church in dealing with the abuse of young people. The Holy Fathers comments came in the Clementine Hall of the Vaticans Apostolic Palace, where he received participants in an international congress in the Vatican on the theme, Promoting Digital Child Dignity From Concept to Action, 2017 to 2019. The November 14-15 congress is being jointly hosted by the Vaticans Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, the Child Dignity Alliance and the United Arab Emirates Government.

Vatican, November 14, 2019

Your Majesty,Your Highness,Distinguished Authorities and Religious Leaders,Your Eminences, Your Excellencies,Ladies and Gentlemen,

I thank His Highness Sheikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan and Father Federico Lombardi for their kind words of greeting and introduction to this meeting.

The issues that you will be addressing these days are of immense importance. Many of you have been dealing with these issues with determination and farsightedness for some time. When, two years ago, I received the participants in the Congress on Child Dignity in the Digital World, I urged you to join forces in order to address more effectively the protection of the dignity of children in the digital world. In effect, this complex problem calls for cooperation on the part of all: experts in science and technology, entrepreneurs and economists, legislators, politicians and security agents, educators and psychologists, and, not least, religious and moral leaders (cf. Address to the Participants in the Congress on Child Dignity in the Digital World, 6 October 2017). I am pleased to know that you have continued on this path, along with new initiatives, including particularly the interreligious conference held in Abu Dhabi a year ago, taken up by our meeting today.

In recent decades, from painful and tragic experience, the Catholic Church has become profoundly aware of the gravity and effects of the sexual abuse of minors, the suffering it causes, and the urgent need to heal wounds, combat such crimes and establish effective means of prevention. For this reason, the Church senses the duty to approach these issues with a long-term vision.

We are in fact confronting critical challenges that threaten the future of the human family due to the astonishing development of technology in the information and communications media. Doubtless, the development of new technologies in the digital world provides great opportunities for minors, for their education and for their personal growth. It allows for a wider sharing of knowledge, promotes economic development and offers new possibilities in a number of areas, including that of health care. New technologies open up new horizons, particularly for those minors living in situations of poverty and distant from the urban centers of more industrialized countries.

The challenge before us, then, is to ensure that minors have safe access to these technologies, while at the same time ensuring their healthy and serene development and protecting them from unacceptable criminal violence or grave harm to the integrity of their body and spirit.

Tragically, the use of digital technology to organize, commission and engage in child abuse at a distance, cutting across national borders, is outstripping the efforts and resources of the institutions and security agencies charged with combating such abuse; as a result, it becomes quite difficult to fight these horrific crimes effectively. The spread of images of abuse or the exploitation of minors is increasing exponentially, involving ever more serious and violent forms of abuse and ever younger children.

The dramatic growth of pornography in the digital world is, in itself, most serious, the fruit of a general loss of the sense of human dignity; frequently it is linked to human trafficking. What makes this phenomenon even more disturbing is the fact that this material is widely accessible even to minors via the internet, especially through mobile devices. The majority of scientific studies have highlighted the profound impact of pornography on the thinking and behavior of children. It will surely have lifelong effects on them, in the form of grave addiction, violent behavior and deeply troubled emotional and sexual relationships.

A greater awareness of the enormity and gravity of these phenomena is urgently required. Indeed, one feature of todays technological development is that it is always one step ahead of us, for frequently we first see its most attractive and positive aspects (which indeed are many), but only realize their negative effects once they are widespread and very hard to remedy. I would say this to you, who are scholars and researchers: you find yourselves before an essential challenge! Since these problems are vast and complex, a clear understanding of their nature and extent is needed. We cannot deceive ourselves into thinking that we can address these issues on the basis of shallow and superficial knowledge. Laying the foundations for greater protection of the dignity of minors should be one of the most noble aims of your scientific research.

The role of the communications media is no less important. There is a need to increase throughout society an awareness of the risks inherent in an unchecked development of technology. We have not yet understood and often do not want to understand the gravity of this issue in its totality and future consequences. This cannot come about without close cooperation with the media, that is, with you, communications workers, for you have the ability to influence society and public opinion.

You have rightly chosen as the theme of this meeting: From Concept to Action. Indeed, it is not enough to understand; we must act. The moral condemnation of the harm inflicted on minors through the misuse of new digital technologies needs urgently to be translated into concrete initiatives. The longer we wait, the more entrenched and insurmountable this evil becomes. This concern has been raised by those who like many of you have generously dedicated their lives to this battle in direct contact with this crime and its victims, whether as educators, law enforcement and security agents, and many others.

A crucial aspect of the problem concerns the tension which ultimately becomes a conflict between the idea of the digital world as a realm of unlimited freedom of expression and communication, and the need for responsible use of technologies and consequently a recognition of their limits.

The protection of complete freedom of expression is linked to the protection of privacy through increasingly sophisticated forms of message encryption, which would make any control extremely difficult, if not impossible. A fitting balance must be found between the legitimate exercise of freedom of expression and the interests of society, so as to ensure that digital media are not used to perpetrate criminal activities against minors. For the sake of advancing the development of the internet and its many benefits, companies that provide services have long considered themselves mere suppliers of technological platforms, neither legally nor morally responsible for the way they are used. The potential of digital technology is enormous, yet the possible negative impact of its abuse in the area of human trafficking, the planning of terrorist activities, the spread of hatred and extremism, the manipulation of information and we must emphasize in the area of child abuse, is equally significant. Public opinion and lawmakers are finally coming to realize this. How can we help them take suitable measures to prevent abuse? Allow me to emphasize two things.

First. Freedom and the protection of privacy are valuable goods that need to be balanced with the common good of society. Authorities must be able to act effectively, using appropriate legislative and executive measures that fully respect the rule of law and due process, in order to counter criminal activities that harm the life and dignity of minors.

Second. Large companies are key players in the astonishing development of the digital world; they easily cut across national borders, are at the cutting edge of technological advances, and have accumulated enormous profits. It is now clear that they cannot consider themselves completely unaccountable vis--vis the services they provide for their customers. So I make an urgent appeal to them to assume their responsibility towards minors, their integrity, and their future. It will not be possible to guarantee the safety of minors in the digital world without the full involvement of companies in this sector and without a full awareness of the moral and social repercussions of their management and functioning. Such companies are bound not only to respect the law but also to be concerned with the direction taken by the technological and social developments which they produce and promote since such developments are far ahead of the laws that would seek to regulate them.

Although these challenges are difficult to meet, there are a number of areas of action. I will limit myself to a few examples.

Initiatives such as the Safety by Design legislation sponsored by a Commission of the Australian government are valuable because they ensure that the digital industry is proactive and consistent in its approach to customer safety starting from the development of online products and services. In this way, responsibility for overall safety is explicitly acknowledged to be incumbent upon not only the consumer but also on those who manufacture, develop and supply such products and services.

In some countries too, legislators are committed to ensuring that companies providing internet navigation on mobile devices are obliged to verify the age of their customers, in order to prevent minors from accessing pornographic sites. This is to be encouraged. Indeed, minors today for the most part use cell phones and the filters used for PCs have remained ineffective. Reliable studies tell us that the average age of first access to pornography is currently eleven, and tends to keep lowering. This is in no way acceptable.

While parents are primarily responsible for raising their children, it must be acknowledged that, for all their goodwill, it is increasingly difficult for them to control their childrens use of electronic devices. Therefore, the industry must cooperate with parents in their educational responsibilities. Consequently, the identification of a users age should not be considered a violation of the right to privacy, but an essential requirement for the effective protection of minors.

The possibilities offered by technology are constantly growing. Today there is much talk about the applications of artificial intelligence. The identification and elimination of illegal and harmful images from circulation on the net by the use of increasingly refined algorithms represents a very significant area of research. Scientists and those working in the digital world should continue to promote such research, engaging in a noble competition to combat the wrongful use of newly available technology. I, therefore, appeal to computer engineers to feel personally responsible for building the future. It is their task to undertake, with our support, ethical development of algorithms, and in this way, to help create a new ethics for our time.

The development of technology and the digital world involve huge economic interests. The influence that these interests tend to have on the conduct of companies cannot be overlooked. There is a need to ensure that investors and managers remain accountable so that the good of minors and society is not sacrificed to profit. We have seen how society has grown more sensitive to the areas of environmental care and respect for the dignity of labor. A similar concern for the effective protection of minors and the fight against pornography should become increasingly felt in the finance and the economy of the digital world. The safe and sound growth of our young is a noble goal worth pursuing; it has far greater value than mere economic profit gained at the risk of harming young people.

In a world like ours, where boundaries between countries are continually blurred by the developments in digital technology, our efforts should emerge as a global movement associated with the deepest commitment of the human family and international institutions to protecting the dignity of minors and every human person. This demanding task sets before us new and challenging questions. How can we defend the dignity of persons, including minors, in this digital age, when the life and identity of an individual are inextricably linked to his or her online data, which new forms of power are constantly seeking to possess? How can we formulate shared principles and demands in the globalized digital world? These are challenging questions that call us to cooperate with all those working with patience and intelligence for this goal at the level of international relations and regulations.

Mans creativity and intelligence are astonishing, but they must be positively directed to the integral good of the person from birth and throughout life. Every educator and every parent is well aware of this and needs to be helped and supported in this task by the shared commitment born of a new alliance between all institutions and centers of education.

A contribution to this can be made not only by sound ethical reasoning but also by a religious vision and inspiration, which has universal scope because it places respect for human dignity within the framework of the grandeur and sanctity of God, the Creator, and Saviour. In this regard, I am gratified by the presence of a number of distinguished religious leaders who, in a spirit of solidarity and cooperation, have readily taken up the task of addressing these problems. I greet them with great respect and I thank them most heartily. We ought to be as one in the effort to protect minors in the digital world, now and in the future. For in this way, we bear witness to Gods love for each person, beginning with the smallest and the most vulnerable, so as to foster in everyone, in every part of the world and in every religious confession, concern, care, and awareness. We must ban from the face of the earth violence and every form of abuse against children. Let us look into their eyes: they are your sons and daughters; we must love them as Gods masterpieces and children. They have the right to a good life. We have the duty to do everything possible to ensure that right. Thank you.

Libreria Editrice Vaticana 2019

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November 17th, 2019 at 1:48 pm

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How Dutchess County is working to close the digital divide – Poughkeepsie Journal

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The Adriance Memorial Library in Poughkeepsie employs two technology instructors who offer free classes to the public. Patrick Oehler, Poughkeepsie Journal

Ebony Miles can be found in the computer lab at Adriance Memorial Library on most mornings.

For the past several months, she has been to the library with her daughter, now five months old, to work on her resume and apply for jobs.

The City of Poughkeepsie resident does not have a computer at home, and didnt have one at home growing up.

I just remember using the computer at school, said Miles, who has been trying to find a job in housekeeping or retail.

I cant afford (a computer) right now, she said, as she is barely making it.

At 38 years old, Miles is learning to navigate the internet, with the help of those at the Poughkeepsie library system location. She plans next to take a class on the basics of creating and editing documents, in the hopes of someday becoming a receptionist.

Betty Cooper, one of the Adriance Memorial Library's technology instructors speaks with Jocelyn Johnson -Kearney following a computer class in the library's Marcotte computer lab in the City of Poughkeepsie on October 23, 2019. (Photo: Patrick Oehler, Patrick Oehler/Poughkeepsie Journal)

For many, a computer and access to the internet have become an indispensable aspect of daily life, the impact of which is often taken for granted.

And, with so much dependent upon it, not having a computer can put individuals at a disadvantage first through the lack of a critical educational resource, and then through the inability to connect to employers.

This has become known as the digital divide, and it can keep those in poverty from building for themselves a better life.

"In these times, a person is really thwartedin their path to success if they don't know how to use, or have access to, modern computer equipment," said Deborah Minnerly, atechnology instructor at Adriance Memorial Library. "One can't do much without the computer resources and skills;almost any job requires an online application even an unskilled one.Folks even need to print out their bus ticket to visit a relative."

Through computer classes and an open public computer lab,the Poughkeepsie library system is among the organizations hoping to bridge the gap. Other libraries in the area offer similar programs.

But, there are also new resources available in Dutchesscities: The Beacon and Poughkeepsie housing authorities last month gave out free tablets and offered discounted internet service to residents. The hope is that those in need of work can more easily connect to online resources that could assist them, and the younger residents of a household would have a hurdle removed from their ability to receive an equal education.

And, some school districts have instituted systems for providing at-need students with computers that can be taken home.

The number of those at-need may be more than you think. Nearly half of the households in the U.S.that earn $30,000 or less dont own a computer or have broadband services, according to a Pew Research survey conducted earlier this year. That includes those living in rural areas, such as parts of northern Dutchess, in which population is sparse and there are pockets without broadband internet.

Its unclear how many households in Dutchess are among those. However, according to a United Way study released last year using data from 2016, 9% of all households in the county were below the federal poverty line $11,800 a year for a single adult household and $24,300 for a family of four and 36% didnot earn enoughto support the basic cost of living, which the organization defined at $25,764 for a single adult or around $80,000 for a family of four.

Part of the sample budget created by the United Way in the study called the household survival budget allocated up to $75 a month for technology.

And, survival may not be a bad word to use in a conversation regarding the digital divide, experts say. Computer literacy basics ranging from knowing how to edit and email a document to juggling applications is necessary for students to reach, and thrive, in college or enter the workforce. Something as simple as having proper email etiquette when writing to a professor or potential employer may not come as naturally to someone who does not use a computer every day.

Betty Cooper, one of the Adriance Memorial Library's technology instructors speaks with Denise Austin of Amenia following a computer class in the library's Marcotte computer lab in the City of Poughkeepsie on October 23, 2019. (Photo: Patrick Oehler, Patrick Oehler/Poughkeepsie Journal)

"Access (to technology) is a critical tool, said John Bradley, executive director of Vassar College's Urban Education Initiative, a 16-year-old program in which the college assists Poughkeepsie City School District students through offering access to resources and collaboration with student volunteers.

It's going to be more critical the further a student goes, if you don't have the resources that other people have," Bradley said."When you get to college, you really have to be able to write and edit online, share documentswith team members.You have to be able to researchand validate information online.This isessential to pursuingan education."

Manyof the school districts within Dutchess are working towarda 1:1 student-to-computer ratio in their high schools, and some even middle schools, byassigning laptops or tablets to studentsto take home.

Spackenkill Union Free School District is one of several districts that assigns Chromebooksto all high school students that can be taken home. The district has included the cost of the Chromebooks into their budget for the past five years, Superintendent Mark Villanti said.Rhinebeck Central School District provides loaner laptops to students under identified hardship situations, said Superintendent Joe Phelan.

However, some school districts either cannot or havent been able to initiate such a program. Those include the districts with the countys largest student populations Arlington and Wappingers and districts that do not have the resources to support it.

Poughkeepsie is hoping to bridge the technology gap by applying for Sprints 1Million Project Foundation funding. The independent charitys goal, according to its site, is to help one million high school students who do not have access to the internet at home by providing devices and high-speed access. Last year, 83% of Poughkeepsies student population was considered economically disadvantaged by the state education department.

Poughkeepsie is also among the areas Title I schools, a school that has a high concentration of low-income students and receives supplemental funding. According to a survey last year released by Common Sense, a media and education advocacy group, teachers in Title I schools say 60% of their students do not have access to computers or the internet at home.

"The district is currently seeking opportunity to bridge the technology gap and address the challenges that many urban and rural families face related to internet connectivity," said Superintendent Eric Rosser, who added that the district plans to make "significant investments" to increase the use of technology in the classroom in the future.

For those living in northern Dutchess the concern isnt only not having a computer, but the lack of broadband service to access the internet. Without the internet at home, there isnt much a student can do with a computer, Millbrook Superintendent Philip D'Angelo noted. Teachers will sometime have to make accommodations for students who cannot access the internet at home due to inconsistent or no broadband service.

Forty-two percent of Title I teachers and 31% of non-Title I teachers do not assign homework that requires digital access outside of school, according to Common Senses survey.

When a teacher assigns something, and its internet-based, they will make special accommodations, such as giving additional time, changing the requirements, so the student isnt penalized, DAngelo said.

Monica Perez uses her tablet on October 8, 2019. Perez is part of a pilot program that provides residents in low income housing with internet enabled tablets to help them bridge the technology gap. She uses the tablet to read books & magazines from the library as well as connect with family & friends. (Photo: Patrick Oehler/Poughkeepsie Journal)

Dutchess One Stop, a career service site, sees a steady flow of individuals coming in to use their computers for job searches, said Kadiyah Lodge, the organization's business service manager.

"Nearly every type of job today deals with technology, from a cashier ringing up groceries to amechanic," Lodge said.Being comfortable using a computer is necessary for upward mobility, which is why the organization will sometimes refer their clients to the Poughkeepsielibrary and Dutchess Community College for basic training.

Lodge also pointed out the generational divide. Her organization is seeing more elderly individuals walk through their doors who are seeking employment. This population hasnot grown up with computers and might not be computer literate, she said.

Adriance Memorial Library opened up its computer center in 2010. It holds classes on computer basics, using technology such as iPad, Facebook and Microsoft Office. The staff is also on hand each day from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to helpwith job searches, resume preparation and other needs.

Meanwhile, the Beacon and Poughkeepsie housing authorities are working to put technology into low-income households.

Noah R. Hargett, Beacon Housing Authority'sresident initiative coordinator, initiated a program thatoffers free tablets and discounted internet access to his residents, through a partnership with T-Mobile.The organizations gave out 30 tablets in the summer as part of a pilot program, and 150 tablets in October. The housing authority has another 150 on hand.

Residents are required to pay $10 per month for internet access.

The goal is that the people utilizing the tablets will gain a sense of ownership, Hargett said. He sees theT-Mobile program as a way for the seniors and families living in public housing to become more self-sufficient.

The tablets came with basic pre-loaded apps such as Google and YouTube, but the housing authority also included quick links to websites for the housing authority, Dutchess County Office of the Aging, City of Beacon and Cornell Cooperative Extension, which helps residents with nutrition and wellness.

Hargett said the housing authority is hoping to encourage residents to familiarize themselves with the technology through email communications and its own website.

"Further down the line we will encourage residents to utilize the tablet for workforce development, educational/training courses, and managing their day to day activities," Hargett said.

Monica Perez composes an email on her tablet on October 8, 2019. Perez is part of a pilot program that provides residents in low income housing with internet enabled tablets to help them bridge the technology gap. (Photo: Patrick Oehler/Poughkeepsie Journal)

He hopes the program will expand throughout the mid-Hudson region and is working with Poughkeepsie on their pilot program, which was started last month.

Poughkeepsies five-month pilot program was offered free of charge, according to a notice posted inside the housing authoritys office, which noted residents would have to return the devices at the end of the program. Representatives from the Poughkeepsie office did not respond to Journal inquiries.

This is a good opportunity for those residents who have no computer or access to the internet, the notice read. It will allow residents to access programs and services, remain in contact with friends and family, and enhance their daily lives.

Monica Perez, who lives in senior housing,took part in Beacons pilot program this past summer. Even thoughshe isn't looking for a job, having the tablet improves the quality of her life and allows her to do more, such as contributing to blogs and reaching out to friends.

My mind is like a 40-year-old mind, said the 61-year-old Beacon resident said. (The tablet) keeps my mind active, keeps me from stewing in my own problems.

Saba Ali: SAli1@poughkeepsiejournal.com,845-451-4518.

Wheels to Work program opens door for success in Dutchess

Working poor: 36% of Dutchess households don't make living wage: report

From mahjong and storytimes to tax help and seed swaps, libraries offer plenty to do

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UT Libraries budget receives $2.7 million increase in recurring funds – UT The Daily Texan

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The budget for the Universitys libraries will increase after remaining at $30 million for the past 10 years despite inflation and increasing subscription rates.

Maurie McInnis, executive vice president and provost, announced in an email last week that the University Budget Council approved a $2.7 million recurring fund to increase the librarys previously stagnant budget. The Task Force on the Future of UT Libraries, comprised of staff members, faculty and students, compiled a report on the status of the Universitys libraries and submitted it to McInnis in October.

The work of this task force reflects the need for ongoing dialogue with members of the campus community, McInnis said in the email. This infusion of new funding will help to address some of the inflationary costs and key areas of need.

Lorraine Haricombe, vice provost and director of UT libraries, said the group researched what the libraries needed and raised campus awareness about the libraries funding by holding poster campaigns and speaking with students.

What is really eye-opening is the higher level of awareness around campus now about the challenges of the library as well as the opportunities for the libraries, said Haricombe, who was co-chair of the task force. They seem to be much more energetic around what libraries can do.

The reports recommendations included adjusting the libraries budget for inflation, forming another task force to look into library material access and addressing insufficient staffing, according to the report.

Haricombe said these recommendations were necessary to preserve the libraries on campus, so they can continue to serve the University community.

The role of the libraries here is a very core role to support the Universitys mission of teaching, research and student learning, Haricombe said. It is probably the most efficient agency on campus to serve the broader community.

Classics associate professor Jennifer Ebbeler served as the chair of the collections subcommittee and said McInnis response was a good first step and demonstrated an understanding of the task forces recommendations.

One of the huge things she did was basically make a good faith gesture to the UT community, both faculty and staff and students, Ebbeler said.

Because of McInnis response, Ebbeler said the task force was successful, and it showed that the administration would work to improve University libraries.

Faculty worked on this task force with UT libraries and with the upper administration, and it was a successful collaboration, Ebbeler said.

From here, Haricombe said she hopes McInnis will consider the reports other recommendations, such as digital learning and leadership coordination, and continue to work with faculty and staff on library concerns.

I think there are probably clusters of recommendations that can move forward under one initiative, Haricombe said.

According to the report, the role of libraries in higher education is rapidly changing and the University should continue to prioritize the status of the libraries.

There are many more unknowns regarding the future state of academic libraries writ large, according to the report. This Task Force report should not be viewed as having completed this conversation, but rather as having put forward the first steps.

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UT Libraries budget receives $2.7 million increase in recurring funds - UT The Daily Texan

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Why I left my sick bed for library commissioning – The Nation Newspaper

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Emma Elekwa, Onitsha

It was jubilation for nursery and primary school pupils in Idemili North local government area of Anambra state during the commissioning of modern equipped libraries in five schools in the area by Zaccheus Onumba Dibiaezue Memorial Libraries, a non governmental organization.

The beneficiary schools were Central Nursery and Primary School, Nkpo, Akpakogwe Nursery and Primary School, Ogidi, Nsukwu Nursery and Primary School, Abatete.

Others were Uruaneke Nursery and Primary School, Umuoji and Union Nursery and Primary School, Eziowele.

Speaking at Nkpo during the event, the Education Secretary, Lady Angela Orakwue said she had to leave her hospital bed to attend the event in view of the seriousness she attached to the gesture.

She said they had longed for a library to improve their reading culture as there was no such facility in the area.

She said: I and the pupils are overwhelmed with joy. I was even in the hospital up till this morning, but their coming made me get up from my sick bed and start coming.

We dont even have a library not to talk of standard one.Since January we heard about this, weve trained over 77 teachers per school to man the libraries for effective service.

Describing the gesture as a dream come true, Orakwue thanked the organization for its magnanimity, expressing optimism that it would further improve the reading habits of the students.

She also pledged judicious use of the materials to ensure their durability.

Chief Executive Officer of the organisation, Ego Mbagwu noted that the library was aimed at promoting education which served as a store house for the impartation of knowledge.

She said, Library plays an important role in students academic achievement because it facilitates the work of teachers and ensures that students have access to other materials outside the recommended text to make them independent readers.

Part of our aim is to establish libraries in public schools to make materials available to pupils and students who cannot afford them.

So far, we have established 19 Oasis libraries serving 38 schools and 6,765 pupils in Lagos State. We extended our services to Anambra state where we set up 10 Oasis libraries, serving 16 schools and 2,040 pupils.

We have also established 4 DEAR their time libraries in Lagos State with 73 book boxes serving 1,025 pupils.

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COMMUNITY EVENTS IN THE TRI-LAKES AREA – Arkansas Democrat-Gazette

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Nov. 17

Plant Now for Winter Bliss

HOT SPRINGS Local natural herbalist Tami Sain will offer Plant Now for Winter Bliss from 2:30-3:30 p.m. in the Magnolia Room at Garvan Woodland Gardens, 550 Arkridge Road. Sain will focus on growing winter savory, rosemary, sage, thyme and horseradish. The class is free for members and costs $15 for nonmembers. Registration is required by visiting garvangardens.org or calling (800) 366-4664.

Fall Photowalk

HOT SPRINGS Photographers of all skill levels are invited to attend Garvan Woodland Gardens fall photowalk featuring Anthony Chapel, a blend of native wood, glass and stone, at 9:30 a.m. All types of cameras are welcome, including smartphones and tablets/iPads. The walk lasts 1 1/2 to 2 hours, preceded by a quick classroom session to discuss lighting, composition and focus tips. The event is free for members and costs $15 for nonmembers. Registration is required by visiting garvangardens.org or calling (800) 366-4664.

Trumpet Tales Recital

HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE Richard Jorgensen and Ellen Nagode will present a trumpet and piano recital titled Trumpet Tales at 3 p.m. at Holy Trinity Episcopal Church, 199 Barcelona Road. The recital is free and open to the public.

Toddler Story Time

BENTON Children ages 3 to 5 are invited to Toddler Story Time at 10 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. The event will feature songs, rhymes, flannel stories, board books and fun with instruments.

Play to Learn

BENTON Children ages 4 and younger and their caregivers are invited to Play to Learn at 10:30 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Classic Games

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to play classic card games at 1 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Chess Night

BENTON Youth ages 9 to 18 are invited to play chess at 6 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Saline Crossing Meeting

BENTON The Saline Crossing Regional Park and Recreation Area Inc. will meet at 5:30 p.m. at the Wood Grill Buffet. For more information, call (501) 778-8661.

Diabetes Health Fair

BENTON The annual Diabetes Health Fair will take place from 3-6 p.m. at Saline Memorial Hospital. The event will feature eye-health and diabetes seminars, exercise and weight-management seminars, foot/wound-care seminars, healthy-holiday-eating food demos, blood-pressure screenings and more.

Mother Goose on the Loose

BENTON Children up to 3 years old and their caregivers are invited to Mother Goose on the Loose at 10:30 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. The program will feature songs, rhymes, puppets and instruments to foster language development.

Master Builder Challenge

BENTON Children in kindergarten through the third grade are invited to the Master Builder Challenge at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Table-Top Teens

BENTON Children in grades seven through 12 are invited to Table-Top Teens at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Teen Gaming Club

BRYANT Youth in grades seven through 12 are invited to play video games and help plan gaming events at 4 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Tween Tuesday

BENTON Children in grades four through seven are invited to create art, play games and perform science experiments at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Open Makerspace

BENTON/BRYANT Children of all ages are invited to the Makerspace to design a 3-D print, practice sewing, laminate something or work on any project from 5-6:30 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library in Benton or at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library in Bryant. Children younger than 12 must be accompanied by an adult.

Evening Story Time

BENTON Children ages 2 to 5 are invited to develop literacy skills with stories and songs at the Evening Story Time at 5:30 at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Tim Ernst Program

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to the program The Splendor of Arkansas, with Tim Ernst, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Adultish Book Club

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to the Adultish Book Club at 6 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Watercolor Class

BRYANT Adults ages 18 and older are invited to a watercolor painting class at 6 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Saline County Library Writers

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to join the Saline County Library Writers at 6:30 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

English-Language Class

BENTON All ages are invited to an English-language class at 7 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Health Screenings

MALVERN Baptist Health-Hot Spring County will offer blood-pressure and blood-glucose screenings from 8:30-11:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Malvern Senior Adult Center, 1800 W. Moline St. For more information, visit baptist-health.com or call (501) 332-7020.

Preschool Story Time

BRYANT/BENTON Children ages 3 to 5 are invited to a Preschool Story Time at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library in Bryant and at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library in Benton. The program will feature stories, songs and activities.

Art Exhibit

ARKADELPHIA Unframed, an exhibition of portfolios by Henderson State Universitys Advanced Photography students, will be on display from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday at the Arkadelphia Arts Center. For more information, call (870) 403-1073.

Home-School Hour

BENTON A Home-School Hour will take place at 10:30 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. There will be separate classes for ages 4 to 5, 6 to 8, 9 to 11 and 12 to 18.

Making It Wednesday

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to Making It Wednesday from 1-2:30 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. There will be a new feature project each week, but attendees are free to go off-project. All projects will be appropriate for beginners, with options to add advanced techniques for more experienced crafters.

Crafting With a Cause

BENTON Children ages 10 and older are invited to knit, crochet, loom-knit or weave from 3:30-5 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Kids in the Kitchen

BRYANT Children in kindergarten through the second grade are invited to practice kitchen skills at 4 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Teen Maker Club

BRYANT Youth in grades seven through 12 are invited to paint, draw, program and more at 4 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Baby and Me Story Time

BRYANT Children up to 18 months old and their caregivers are invited to the Baby and Me Story Time at 9:30 a.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Toddler Story Time

BRYANT Children ages 18 months to 3 years and their caregivers are invited to Toddler Story Time at 10:30 a.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library. The program will feature learning concepts through movement, music, stories and play.

Alzheimers Support Meeting

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to an Alzheimers support meeting at 2 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

After-School Adventures

BRYANT Youth in grades seven through 12 are invited to an after-school role-playing game from 4-6 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library.

Cooking Corner

BENTON Children in grades four through seven are invited to a hands-on cooking class at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Teen Coding Adventures

BENTON Youth in grades seven through 12 are invited to learn the principles of coding without using a computer at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

VIP

BENTON Children will have an opportunity to learn about famous architects, oceanographers, astronauts and more at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. The story time is intended for children in first through third grades.

Game Night: Mexican Train

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to play Mexican Train at 6 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Yoga at the Library

BRYANT Adults ages 18 and older are invited to a free yoga class at 6 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library. Attendees are asked to bring a mat and a bottle of water.

Blood Drive

ARKADELPHIA The Arkansas Blood Institute will conduct a blood drive from noon to 4 p.m. at First United Methodist Church, 107 N. Ninth St, No. 5003. Refreshments and T-shirts will be offered to all donors. For more information or to schedule an appointment, visit arkbi.org.

Fall Planetarium Show

ARKADELPHIA Henderson State University will present Seasons of Light at 7 p.m. Thursday and Dec. 3 in the Planetarium. Admission is $3 per person or $1 per student with a current student ID. Late arrivals will not be admitted. For more information, call (870) 230-5162.

A Festival of Christmas

ARKADELPHIA Ouachita Baptist University will present a concert titled A Festival of Christmas at 7:30 p.m. in the Jones Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $12. For more information, visit obu.edu.

Childrens Theater Program

BENTON Children ages 9 to 12 are invited to the Childrens Theater Program at 10:30 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. The program will introduce children to beginning acting techniques. Registration and reading skills are required.

Tai Chi Fit

BENTON Adults ages 18 and older are invited to a Tai Chi Fit class at 11 a.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Home-School Fun Friday

BRYANT Youth ages 6 to 18 are invited to Home-School Fun Friday at 1 p.m. at the Mabel Boswell Memorial Library. The event will feature STEM activities, art projects, games and more.

National Novel Writing Month

BENTON Youth in grades four through 12 are invited to participate in a National Novel Writing Month activity at 4 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Lets Get the Rhythm!

BENTON Children ages 3 to 5 are invited to hear stories and create accompanying music with shakers, drums, bells and more at 10:30 a.m. Friday and Saturday at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library.

Family Yoga

BENTON Children of all ages and their caregivers are invited to family yoga at 1 p.m. at the Bob Herzfeld Memorial Library. The program will promote connection, breath, movement, focus and relaxation.

Fall Arts and Crafts Fair

HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE The Coronado Community Center, 150 Ponderosa Lane, will present its Fall Arts and Crafts Fair from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event will feature vendors with artwork, jewelry, crafts and more. For more information, call (501) 922-5050.

Book Sale

HOT SPRINGS VILLAGE Friends of the Coronado Center Library will offer a book sale from 10 a.m.

to 1 p.m. in Room 5 of the Coronado Community Center, 150 Ponderosa Lane. For more information, contact Mary Eliades at maryeliades@gmail.com.

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