I moved to Oregon a little more than three years ago to work for the Washington County Cooperative Library Services as an outreach librarian, not only for Latinos and the Spanish speaking community, but also for the rest of the rich, diverse ethnic population in the county, a role that I find gratifying. Working with parents and their children is part of my current job. The welcoming attitude of new and/or undocumented immigrants is one of the best gifts that I can receive.
I see outreach as a very important civil responsibility by promoting libraries in order to introduce these communities to the vast resources and programs these institutions have to offer. The work of libraries shouldn’t be limited within their physical space. We, as librarians, have the responsibility to bring services to everybody, even to those individuals and families which both don’t know about libraries or don’t have access to them.
During the summer, and this is really the most fulfilling work that I do, I visit migrant farmers camps to offer storytime to children and their parents, including all the practices of early learning.
If I learned something from all my years working in the field is to be humble, respectful of other cultures, a good listener and always, always, proactive (no excuses allowed).
I’m also proud of being part of the REFORMA Oregon chapter which gives me the opportunity to not only meet and network with other librarians throughout the state, but also share experiences, tips, and concerns related to our Latino and/or Spanish speaking community.
Of course, I have a life besides my work. I love the outdoors and more than anything else, music –always looking for jamming, playing flute and tenor sax. I live with my wife Gloria and our dog, Chico. I also have two daughters, Naima and Chiara, who are my unconditional love.
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