Mark Willis

(937) 227-9500

Dayton Metro Library Wins Prestigious Grant for MetLife Foundation

Reading America Program

Dayton, OH – November 15, 2004 – Dayton Metro Library is one of 29 libraries nationwide selected by Libraries for the Future to participate in the MetLife Foundation Reading America Program. The library-based book and film discussion series for teenagers and adults fosters greater intergenerational understanding and communication, especially in new immigrant families. Reaching America also aims to increase awareness and use of public libraries in communities experiencing significant demographic change.

Dayton Metro Library is partnering with the League of United Latin American Citizens, Council 39000 for this grant. LULAC is a national organization, which serves the community through educational programming & public policy awareness. "There is a synergy in the current initiatives for Latin American Citizens that is very exciting," said Alicia Pagan, LULAC Education Chair. "We are eager to build partnerships, which ultimately benefit the entire community."

The $5000.00 grant will be used to host a series of 4 programs at 3 branch libraries; the Burkhardt branch, the East branch, and the EC Doren branch. The programs, which will be monthly on Friday evenings from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m, starting in January, will begin with a meal, and an opportunity for teens, their parents and neighbors to talk. "We will be showing a video on Latino arts and culture as a springboard to discussion," states Rachel Gut, branch manager at EC Doren branch library. "Each month participants will also have the opportunity to read a book related to the month’s topic for additional dialogue." The final program will be pot luck lunch at the Main Library, and will include the participants from all three branches. "Dayton Metro Library and LULAC are reaching out to the Spanish speaking residents of Dayton," said Gut, "We are excited to offer a program that will help to bridge cultural and generational gaps in the community."

The program will be offered at 4 locations; at the EC Doren branch on the first Friday of the month starting January 7, 2005 and ending April 1, 2005; at the Burkhardt branch on the second Friday of the month starting January 14, 2005, and ending April 8, 2005; at the East branch on the third Friday of the month starting January 21, 2005, and ending April 14, 2005. All Friday programs will start at 6:00 p.m. and end at 7:30 p.m. The finale will be at the Main Library, 215 E. 3rd Street Dayton, from 1:00 – 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 7, 2005..

Libraries for the Future is the program division of Americans for Libraries Council, a national nonprofit organization that champions the role of libraries in American life and promotes new approaches to sustaining and developing libraries in the 21st century.

MetLife Foundation, established in 1976 by MetLife, supports health, education, civic and cultural programs throughout the United States. For more information about the Foundation, please visit the website at