BELLOWS FALLS, Vt. – The Rockingham Library recently received a $500 grant for climate-related programming from the American Library Association. It was one of only two Vermont libraries chosen for this honor. Beginning in January 2021, funds will be used to engage the community in programs and conversations that address the climate change crisis.
Initial library programs will raise awareness of this region’s vulnerability to flash floods and drought. A virtual screening of the documentary film “Flood Bound: The Uplifting Story of Pittsfield, VT” and the reading and discussion of Peggy Shinn’s book “Deluge: Tropical Storm Irene, Vermont’s Flash Floods and the State that Saved Itself” will bring this all home. The library is also working with the Vermont Folklife Center in hopes of recording Rockingham stories about Tropical Storm Irene.
Programs on preparing for and knowing what to do during an extreme weather emergency will follow with presentations by state agencies and dispersal of emergency preparedness literature.
Next, the many ways of building resiliency into our community will be explored including programs on procuring local food from CSAs, home gardening, and composting. Rich Earth Institute of Brattleboro will offer information on a more unconventional but just as valuable method of building resiliency: recycling urine into fertilizer. The library wishes to thank library patron Kat Martin, former interim town manager Chuck Wise, and Rockingham Help & Helpers for their fantastic letters of support, which were included in the grant application. Rockingham residents Laurel Green and Peter Bergstrom proved invaluable in planning for the use of these funds.