Knight Memorial Library Makes “Most Endangered Properties” List

Knight Memorial Library, located on Elmwood Avenue has been added to the list of most endangered properties in Providence.  Over a period of several years, Providence Community Library has been working to improve the property in small increments; funding has recently been secured to work on the roof and exterior of the building.  These areas must be repaired before future work can be done on the inside of the building.

Elmwood Neighborhood Association Newsletter – February 2018

ENA Newsletter – February 2018
Prepared by Karen Hlynsky, Chair, Elmwood Neighborhood Association

ONE Neighborhood Builders opens financial center on Broad St
     ONE Neighborhood Builders is happy to announce the opening of the Elmwood Financial Center (EFC): a one stop, drop-in center for financial literacy coaching, homebuyer education, & resources for setting and reaching financial goals. Located at 770 Broad Street in Providence, the Elmwood Financial Center is a place where people can find answers to common financial questions and strategies for saving, budgeting, and investing in a home. The EFC will be open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am-5pm starting on February 1st, 2018. If you’re interested in learning more, please visit the center, give our HUD certified housing counselors a call at 401-351-8719 or visit our website www.oneneighborhoodbuilders.org.

Montessori Community School and Sophia Academy now accepting applications
  It’s admissions season at Montessori Community School of Rhode Island. MCS RI is a socio-economically diverse early childhood school serving children 18 months- 5 years old. We offer quality Montessori classrooms on the South Side of Providence, focusing on children’s creativity, independence, and care of self. The MCS RI curriculum reflects our core mission of building community, social justice, and socioeconomic & cultural diversity. To learn more contact Amy Borak, aborak@mcsri.org or visit our website at www.mcsri.org. MCS RI is now accepting applications for 2018-2019. 
      Sophia Academy is also accepting applications for the coming year. Sophia aims to change the lives of girls from low income homes through an empowering middle school education. Call or visit the school at 582 Elmwood Ave to request an application form, or download the Sophia Admissions Application from the Web site. To learn more call 401 784-0021 and visit Sophia Academy.

Neighbors for Revitalization (N4R) addresses problem properties
      Born out of a series of community summits hosted by the Providence Children and Youth Cabinet’s (CYC) Community Partnership, N4R addresses the issue of blighted, abandoned properties across the Southside and West End. N4R works with residents, community-based organizations, and other key stakeholders to develop a comprehensive, community-based strategy for resolving the large number of “problem properties”, which threaten the social and physical well-being of our neighborhoods.
      Paula Donovan has been representing Elmwood at these meetings since the group was formed. She has shared a list of over 100 properties in Elmwood that she has scored as being in fair, poor, or substandard condition. Some have been abandoned or neglected for years! (Just look at 91 Niagara, 226 Sackett, or 251 Lenox as long standing problem properties.) If you are interested in seeing this list, please send an email to paula.on.lenox@gmail.com. Any help you can offer to keep the list updated will be much appreciated!
     The N4R team is sustained through a formal partnership with the West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation and volunteers. We collect data about properties at risk and meet with representatives from various city departments to identify which are of immediate concern and may qualify for appropriation under one of the City’s programs. To learn more follow us on Facebook or visit our website. The N4R team meets on the second Wednesday of each month. See the schedule below for meeting details.

Three South Side properties make the PPS most endangered properties list
      At the Providence Preservation Society’s annual meeting on Jan 31, the 10 most endangered properties were announced. Knight Memorial Library is on the list for 2018. This means that more attention is being paid to a building needing repair. Temple Beth El on Broad St and the Gustave F Mensing House at 216-218 Adelaide Ave are also on the list. Read more at http://www.ppsri.org/most-endangered-properties/2018-mep-list

Friends of Knight Memorial Library news 
      Despite a lengthy library closing in 2017, book sales generated $5000. Nearly 2000 volunteer hours contributed to the sorting and sale of donations. There is now so much stock to share with our neighbors that all sales in February will be 50% off. There are additional opportunities to buy in February: Tuesday and Thursdaymornings from 10:30 to 12:30, Wednesday evenings (Feb 14, 21, and 28) from 5 to 7:30, and Saturday, February 10 from 10 to 1:00.
     Friends of Knight Memorial Library and other volunteers planted 400 tulip and daffodil bulbs in the front gardens and tree wells of the library. Spring will be an extravaganza of blooms thanks to volunteers and the Peace Flag Project of RI that donated the bulbs.

AARP promotes the Care Act
AARP is asking for our help in distributing CARE Act flyers and posters throughout our community. The CARE Act, effective in March 2017, mandates that hospitals 1) record the name of the loved one’s family caregiver when the loved one is being admitted to the hospital; 2) informs the family caregiver when their loved one is released; 3) provides caregiving instructions to caregiver.  We continue to reach out to caregivers and loved ones to educate them about the law.
If you are able to help distribute wallet cards or posters about the law, contact Darlene Reza Rossi at drezarossi@aarp.org.  An AARP representative will be at the next Crime Watch meeting on February 28.

Park and garden news
Join the Director of Providence Parks, Wendy Nilssen for a trail run at Roger Williams Park on Wednesday mornings at 6:00 am. Meet at the Dalrymple Boathouse and run the Big Lakes Trail, 3.2 miles at an easy pace. Post-run breakfast cookies will be provided.
 Spring is just six weeks away. It’s not too early to apply for a garden plot at Peace and Plenty Garden. Grow your own veggies and be a part of a vibrant gardening community. Contact Doug at doug.crimewatch@gmail.com for information.

Crime Watch news
 RI Coalition Against Gun Violence is a coalition of almost 100 partner organizations whose memberships include more than 120,000 Rhode Islanders united in the effort to reduce gun violence. The coalition is going to come out strong in 2018, fighting to keep guns out of RI K-12 schools and to ban high capacity magazines and military style assault weapons in Rhode Island.
Neighborhoods that look uncared for or unattended may be inviting more serious problems. Make sure to shovel sidewalks after snowstorms and report potholes, graffiti, mattresses left on sidewalks, etc. by calling 311. Download the PVD311 app and take photos of things that need attention on your street, or report them at http://www.providenceri.gov/pvd-311/

Keep reading for meeting and event details and to see what else is happening.

Find general information about community groups, greening Elmwood, community policing, and city services in the ENA Reference Guide mailed in June.

_____________________________________________

S C H E D U L E   O F   E V E N T S

FEBRUARY MEETINGS and EVENTS

  • Sunday, February 4 – ENA Advisory Board meeting
  • Tuesday, February 6 – Road Safety Assessment of Elmwood Ave
  • Tuesday, February 6  – “Developer for a Day” neighborhood workshop
  • Wednesday, February 7  – Friends of Knight Memorial Library meeting
  • Saturday, February 10  – Friends of Knight Memorial Library book sale
  • Wednesday, February 14  – Elmwood Ave Business & Community Association (EBCA) meeting
  • Wednesday, February 14  – Neighbors for Revitalization (N4R) meeting
  • Thursday, February 22  – South Providence Neighborhood Association (SPNA) meeting
  • Wednesday, February 28  – Crime Watch meeting for Elmwood & South Providence

RECURRING ACTIVITIES in FEBUARY

  • Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30 to 12:30 – Friends of Knight Memorial Library book sale
    Wednesdays, 14th, 21st, 28th – Friends of Knight Memorial book sale
  • City of Providence Commission meetings

o   City Plan Commission meets monthly on 3rd Tuesday at 4:45

o   Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Commission meets monthly on 3rd Wednesday at 4:45

______________________________________

FEBRUARY MEETINGS and EVENTS

Sunday, February 4, 6:00 – 7:30 pm – ENA Advisory Board meeting
Advisory board meets to develop outreach efforts and define the direction of ENA.
For more information, contact Paula Donovan, paula.on.lenox@gmail.com or Karen Hlynsky, karen_ena@earthlink.net.

Tuesday, February 6, 10:00 to 11:00 am – Road Safety Assessment of Elmwood Ave
Meet up Location: Walgreen’s, 533 Elmwood Ave
An assessment of road safety along Elmwood Avenue (US Rt 1) from Carter Street to Linden Avenue (northern entrance to Roger Williams Park). The RSA team plans to follow this schedule: 10 am, meet at Walgreens; 10:10, Carter St; 10:25, Adelaide Ave; 10:35, Sackett St; 10:45, Cadillac Dr, 10:50, 1-95 ramps; 11:00, end of RSA. Please bring a safety vest if possible.
Contact Traffic Engineer, Skye Levin, 401 457 7803SLevin@VHB.com to get crash diagrams for this segment of Elmwood Ave.

Tuesday, February 6, 6:00 to 8:00 pm – “Developer for a Day” Neighborhood Workshop 
This is the 2nd workshop hosted by SPNA and SWAP that provides an opportunity for residents to speak directly about the Barbara Jordan II housing developments in Upper South Providence.
For more information, contact Dwayne Keys, South Providence Neighborhood Association (SPNA), (401) 369-1334southprovneighbors@gmail.com

Wednesday, February 7, 6:00 to 7:30 pm – Friends of Knight Memorial Library meeting
Location: Knight Memorial Library, 275 Elmwood Ave
Providence Community Library’s Maintenance Supervisor, Mike Nickerson will explain the assessment of the building.
Contact: Debbie Schimberg, Deborah@gleegum.com
Note: Friends meetings are held on the second Tuesday of each month.

Saturday, February 10, 10:00am to 1:00pm – Friends of Knight Memorial Library Book Sale
Location: Knight Memorial Library, 275 Elmwood Ave
We are reopening the Saturday Book Sale after a 7 month hiatus. During that time we’ve accumulated so many books that we’re offering everything in stock for ½ off our already outrageously low prices.  Please note the new hours!
Contact: Karen, Karen_ena@earthlink.net(401) 941-8249

Wednesday, February 14, 9:00 – 10:30 am – Elmwood Ave Business & Community Association (EBCA) meeting
Location: Elmwood Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, 225 Elmwood Ave
Participants at the January meeting discussed next steps for beautification of and programming for Columbus Square. In February we continue that work, meet Adela Goldbard, Assistant Professor at RISD, whose class is working on socially engaged public art.
RSVP to Karen, Karen_ena@earthlink.net(401) 941-8249
Note: EBCA meetings are held on the 2nd Wednesday of each month.

Wednesday, February 14, 6:00 – 7:30pm – Neighbors for Revitalization (N4R) meeting
Location: Sankofa Community Room, West Elmwood Housing Development Corporation, 70 Westfield Street
Work with residents, community-based organizations, and other key stakeholders to develop a comprehensive community-based strategy for resolving the large number of problem properties in the West End and South Side.
Learn more: Follow us on Facebook or visit our website.
Join the group: Contact Teresa Guaba, Project Coordinator, Teresa_guaba@cycprovidence.org.
Note: N4R meets on the 2nd Wednesday of each month

Thursday, February 22, 6:00 to 8:00 – South Providence Neighborhood Association meeting
Location: Community Prep School, Somerset St. in Upper South Providence
This meeting will focus on the current activities & future endeavors of SPNA’s meeting host, the Community Preparatory School. Representatives of Community Prep will present information about their own community engagement, answer questions, and address any neighborhood concerns about Community Prep. In addition, representatives from the City of Providence will solicit direct neighbor feedback regarding Phase II of the City Walk project.
To get on the SPNA mailing list, contact Dwayne Keys, southprovneighbors@gmail.com(401) 369-1334.
Note: SPNA meetings are held on the fourth Thursday of each month.

Wednesday, February 28, 6:00 – 7:30 – Crime Watch meeting for Elmwood & South Providence 
Location:  640 Broad St, YMCA for Youth Development Community Room (across from St Joseph’s)
AARP RI will present AARP’s framework for building livable communities via its presence in the Southside and discuss the new CARE Act that passed into law last year.
Meet with Lt. James Barrows, who reports on incidents in the previous month. Talk face to face with the police commander to resolve quality of life issues.
For agenda updates contact Doug, doug.crimewatch@gmail.com
Note: Crime Watch meetings are held on the fourth Wednesday of each month. Crime Watch window placards are available at each meeting.

RECURRING ACTIVITIES in FEBRUARY

Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10:30 to 12:30 & Wednesdays, Feb 14, 21, 28, 5:00 to 7:30 –
Friends of Knight Memorial Library book sale
Location: Knight Memorial Library Community Room, 275 Elmwood Ave
Browse through 1000’s of sorted and categorized books. See what’s new in the children’s area. Stock up on videos and DVDs for the long winter nights. Earnings support library programs.

City of Providence Commission Meetings
Location: 444 Westminster St, Joseph Doorley Municipal Building, 1st Floor Meeting Room
Many neighborhood decision-making discussions have taken place in such meetings. Agendas are published at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting and are available at http://sos.ri.gov/openmeetings/.

  • City Plan Commission meets monthly on 3rd Tuesday at 4:45
  • Bicycle & Pedestrian Advisory Commission meets monthly on 3rd Wednesday at 4:45

Providence Community Library Now Offering Citizenship Class

In response to requests from the community, Providence Community Library is pleased to announce a program to provide help to those who are seeking Citizenship in the United States. The library is pleased to be able to offer an experienced instructor for this program opportunity. Please share information with any neighbors or friends who may be interested.

CITIZENSHIP CLASS

March 5 to June 25, 2018

Mondays 5:30 –7:30pm

Knight Memorial Library

275 Elmwood Avenue, Providence

LEARN:

  • The requirements to naturalization
  • The N-400 application for Naturalization
  • The 100 Civic/History questions required
  • To pass the U.S. Citizenship Exam
  • The written and oral parts of the test
  • If you qualify to have the USCIS fees waived
  • Practice for official citizenship interview

REQUIREMENT: Must be eligible to apply for U.S. Naturalization

Instructor Bruno Sukys has more than 40 years of experience in Immigration, as former
Citizenship & Immigration Services Program Director at Dorcas International Institute of RI Inc

CLASSES are FREE with a $30.00 materials fee.

For information or to register: Carolina Briones 467-2700 X 1608

Providence Community Library “Over the Edge” Fundraiser

Providence Community Library (PCL) provides the people of Providence with a wealth of knowledge and free learning resources. Our mission is to fight low literacy and lack of opportunity, raise reading scores and help more than 178,000 library users achieve their dreams.

Your mission is to ascend to the roof, step over the edge and rappel down the 12-story, 150 feet high Regency Plaza building in Providence. The first 90 individuals to raise a minimum of $1,000 will earn a spot to go Over the Edge for PCL. The valuable funds you raise will take PCL’s services to a new level and will pay for books, computers, exciting makerspace technology, innovative programming, and a whole lot more!

Space is limited, so act now!

IMPORTANT UPDATE FOR DACA RECIPIENTS IN RHODE ISLAND

Following a recent federal district court decision, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) is now accepting DACA renewal applications again.

Anyone who currently holds or has previously held DACA status (even if that status is now expired), is eligible to apply for renewal.  USCIS is still not accepting initial requests for DACA status from people who have never had it.

Those who are eligible to renew their DACA status should do so immediately. Because USCIS is accepting renewal applications under a court order, it is unclear how long this window of opportunity will remain open.

Beginning today, Dorcas International Institute of RI is now holding daily walk-in DACA clinics to respond to the community need.  We will assess an individual’s eligibility to renew his/her DACA status, and, if eligible, complete the paperwork. Applicants should bring their work permit and passport to walk-in hours. No appointment is necessary.Walk-In Hours:
– Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri, 9-4:30 pm;
– Wed & Sat 9:00-12:00;
–  hours available by appointment: please call 401-784-8621
All fees ($495 USCIS filing fee and $100 DIIRI service fee) will be covered by funds previously donated in September 2017. DACA renewal applicants pay nothing.

HEROES in OUR COMMUNITIES Bilingual Storytelling ~ Taller de narrativa bilingüe

HEROES in OUR COMMUNITIES

Bilingual Storytelling ~ Taller de narrativa bilingüe

Providence Community Library in partnership with Project Crisol announces the second Annual Bilingual Storytelling Workshop Series for aspiring young writers aged 6-12. Participants
will be coached in crafting and telling their stories in compelling ways, and in listening to each
other’s stories respectfully. Participants will be invited to submit their stories to the Annual
Bilingual Youth Writing Contest and to join the Day of the Children Celebration in April 28.

Providence Community Library, en colaboración con Project Crisol, anuncia la segunda
serie anual de talleres de cuentos bilingües para jóvenes aspirantes a escritores de las edades
comprendidas entre 6 y 12 años. Los participantes serán guiados en la elaboración y la narración
de sus historias de manera convincente, y en escuchar las historias de los demás con respeto.
Los participantes tendrán la oportunidad de presentar sus historias al Concurso anual de
narrativa juvenil y asistir a la Celebración del Día de los niños el 28 de abril.

SOUTH PROVIDENCE LIBRARY
441 Prairie Ave. Providence
10:00 am to 11:30 am

SATURDAYS
January 27
February 10 & 24
March 24
April 7 &14

For information and registration: (401) 467-2700 X 1608

Providence Community Library active in 2018 End-to-End Census Test

Census Jobs are Available

The U.S. Census has begun recruiting for temporary full- and part-time positions in support of the 2018 End-to-End Census Test.  The 2018 End-to-End Census Test supports the 2020 Census.

The goal of the 2020 Census is to obtain an accurate population count of residents. The 2018 Census End-to-End Test will provide insights to better conduct the 2020 Census and is our planning tool to ensure an accurate census.

The Address Canvassing portion, of the 2018 End-to-End Census Test, is taking place in three sites: Bluefield-Beckley-Oak Hill, W.Va.; Providence County, R.I.; and Pierce County, Wash.

2018 End-to-End Census Test jobs available: Providence County, Rhode Island. Please visit https://www.census.gov/2018jobs or call 1-866-593-6155.

Federal Relay Service: 1-800-877-8339 TTY/ASCII

The Federal Relay Service provides equal communication access for persons who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, deaf/blind, or have speech disabilities.

The U.S. Census Bureau is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

https://www.census.gov/2018censustest

 

Rhode Island is at Risk

An accurate Census is Vital to Rhode Island.  The state is at risk of losing one of only two congressional seats, and federal dollars coming to Rhode Island depend on an accurate count.

R.I. clings to second seat in U.S. House

New Census Projections Show RI To Lose U.S. House Seat

 

Census Records are Sealed

It is important that all residents of Rhode Island be counted regardless of legal status.  Census information is not available to other government agencies.

https://www.census.gov/history/www/genealogy/decennial_census_records/the_72_year_rule_1.html

 

Look to Providence Community Library for help with the Census.

Employment assessments at Rochambeau Library, Friday afternoons in January, February and March

http://www.provcomlib.org/news-events/calendar/2018/us-census-hiring-2

In April 2018, census surveys may be completed at Providence Community Library Locations.

9th Annual Providence Children’s Film Festival February 16 – February 25, 2018

The 9th annual Providence Children’s Film Festival takes place February 16-25, 2018 with screenings, filmmaking workshops, and free activities, along with post-film conversations that help deepen the film-watching experience. Audiences of all ages will enjoy over 100 feature-length and short films—including live-action, documentary, and animation—made by filmmakers from around the world. PCFF’s mission is to present the best of independent and international children’s cinema to inspire, delight, educate, and connect a diverse community of children and families from Rhode Island and beyond. Events take place at main venues within walking distance of downtown Providence and at satellite venues across the state.
For festival details, visit: http://providencechildrensfilmfestival.org
Animation Creation Studio @ Washington Park Library
Tuesday, February 20th
2:00 – 4:00 PM
Ages 8+ or under 8 accompanied by an adult
Register by calling 401-781-3136 between 1:00 and 5:30 Monday – Friday
 
Bring your characters and their stories to life through animation! This short workshop gives kids an opportunity to create and learn about animation using storyboards to plan it and stop motion  techniques to film it!

National Library Services, NLS Veterans’ Benefits

The National Library Services (NLS) offers a free braille and talking books library service program for veterans and residents of the United States. By law, veterans receive preference for these library services. Veterans and residents with temporary or permanent low vision, blindness, or a physical challenge that prevents them from reading or holding the printed page are eligible for special reading materials and library services. The Rhode Island Talking Books Library (TBL) provides these services to local veterans and residents with its accessible library resources. If you believe you may be eligible (Eligibility Requirements) for this program, please fill out a TBL Application Form to take advantage of the services TBL provides.

State of Rhode Island Office of Library & Information Services