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Keene Public Library Awarded $10,000 American Dream Literacy grant to Offer Conversation Groups and Learning Lab

The Keene Public Library has been selected as one of 20 public libraries nationwide to receive a $10,000 American Dream Literacy Initiative grant from the American Library Association (ALA) and Dollar General Literacy Foundation.

With the funding, the Keene Public Library will develop English language conversation circles and a computer learning lab.

“We are thrilled that our library was chosen for this competitive grant,” said Gail Zachariah, Head of Engagement, Outreach, and Youth Services at the Keene Public Library. “With this $10,000, we will be able to better assist adults in our community who wish to improve their English language skills. You can see some of our offerings on our new webpage devoted to English Language Learning resources.

The library will partner with Keene Community Education. The English language conversations circles will start in the summer and the learning lab will be available four hours a week in part of the new programming rooms that will be available once the library’s construction concludes.

The Keene Public Library was selected through a competitive, peer-reviewed application process. Eighty-five public libraries applied for the 20 available grants, according to the ALA Public Programs Office.

The American Dream Literacy Initiative strives to develop tools and resources for libraries and library staff to provide effective literacy services to adult English language learners in their communities and across the country.

Since the program’s inception, more than 200 libraries in Dollar General communities have initiated or expanded literacy services for adult English language learners. The grants allow libraries to augment their print and digital English as a second language (ESL) collections; increase computer access and training; provide job training; hold English language learning (ELL), general educational development (GED) and citizenship classes; and raise the visibility of services for immigrant populations.

The American Dream Literacy Initiative is made possible through the generous support of the Dollar General Literacy Foundation.


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