Library reaches out to teens through TAG
by Dean Julius
Feb 03, 2012 | 1010 views | 0 0 comments | 8 8 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The Robinson Carpenter Memorial Library is reaching out to the community's youth in order to better educate them about Black History Month.

At 4 p.m. Feb. 27, the library, in conjunction with the Teen Advisory Group, will host the fourth annual Heart of Black History program at the Robinson Carpenter Library.

TAG is a "group of teens that volunteer their time at the library to help sponsor events here at the library age 12-19 years old," Youth Services Librarian Bobbie Matheney said. "We want to get the library more involved with teenagers in our community.

"Every year we have guest speakers who come to talk to the teenagers about Black History Month," Matheney said. "This year Kelvin Williams will be our guest speaker."

Williams, newly elected sheriff of Bolivar County, is the first African American sheriff to be elected in Bolivar County since the turn of the last century.

"This year there will also be a young man coming to motivate the teens about staying out of trouble," Matheney said.

"There will also be a quiz related to Black History Month," Matheney said. "It will be a multiple choice type quiz about African Americans in America's history that will encourage the audience to get involved with the program."

According to Matheney, a musical guest will also sing a selection of songs related to Black History Month.

"Black History Month is a nationally celebrated event and the library wants to play a part in educating teens about the history of African Americans in our nation's history," she said.

According to Matheney, getting teens involved with the library and Black History Month is something she finds important.

"Black History Month is not taught often enough in schools," Matheney said. "Many of our teens don’t know that much about their history and that is what this event is about, education."

"Last year we researched Emmitt Till and the teens were not familiar with his story," she said. "The teens are required to do their own research and educate themselves about different African American's in our history."

According to Matheney, teen involvement outside of school is critical to keeping teens educated and out of trouble.

"It's important to get teens involved with all programs outside of school, period," Matheney said. "That is where teens go astray."

"Believe it or not, teens come into the library very often to use the computer or get on Facebook. This is how I am able to reach out and get them involved with TAG.

Education outside of the classroom is what TAG is dedicated to achieving and Black History Month is certainly not excluded from their educational goals.