For many teens in Alameda County, the library isn’t just a place to study, it’s become a space for them to get away from mounting pressures from school and their social lives and a place where they can just relax and be themselves. For example, Oakland teenagers can come to the Asian Branch once a week, for game day.
Anna Xu is a teen advisory member at the library. She and the teen advisory group brainstorm ways the library can help meet the teens’ needs.
If you head southeast from the Lakeview Library, way down to the 80s blocks of International Boulevard, be sure to take a turn at 88th to visit the Elmhurst branch of the Oakland Library. You'll have to look closely—this library is in a small converted house. Elmhurst operates like any other public library: books to check out, computers to use, and a children's program. But it's got a problem: most kids can’t get to it very easily. The Elmhurst branch is trying to fix that.
If you’ve traveled out of Oakland airport, you’ve probably seen a beautiful piece of artwork – graceful, long-legged cranes painted on the windows in Terminal 2. It’s called “Going Away, Coming Home.” It’s a piece about being of and from two places at once, about the in-between existence we inhabit in transit. By looking at it, you’d probably never imagine that the artist once risked her life to make paintings like this.
Urban Debate has existed since 1985 and has continued to evolve – making it a national and local phenomenon. The Bay Area Urban Debate League sponsored a recent tournament at UC Berkeley, where 400 Bay Area high school students showed up ready to debate.