Opinion

A call to community action — via the library | My Turn

I love Redmond, but I hardly know her — and that's coming from someone who has volunteered in the community for 20 years. I bet all of you have that same feeling. But what if we could get to really know Redmond and what her residents aspire to — is that worth striving for?

Yes, we have City Hall, nonprofits and service groups that do a great job serving those comfortable approaching them — but how many are too intimidated to go to a council meeting? How many are so new to Redmond they don't know that Together Center or Hopelink exist to help those in need?

Enter the library. I'll wager it's the most visited building in town, making it a great place to bring together residents for community building. More importantly, it offers a neutral space — no political or religious leaning there.

The notion of a library as a space to build community was recently endorsed by the American Library Association, which teamed up with a nonprofit called the Harwood Institute to provide a format for community dialogue. Fundamental to the Harwood strategy is to not presume one knows what the community wants to discuss but to invite residents to first answer these two questions:

1) What are your aspirations for your community?2) What will it take to reach our aspirations?

So here's my pitch: If there's a need for this type of community connection let's get together at the library.

I'm inspired to aspire for a more perfect union in Redmond — are you? If so, please contact me at miguel@journalist.com or (425) 802-3806 and let's see if we can get to know Redmond better, together.

Miguel Llanos of Redmond is a 20-year member of the Friends of the Redmond Library and a co-founder of the Redmond Historical Society

 

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