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Pioneer Grant to Reduce Library Barriers for Domestic Violence Survivors

Shannon Bowman-Sarkisian

After years of working in west coast bookstores and developing a specialty in rare books, Shannon
Bowman-Sarkisian is now studying to be a librarian at Indiana University and working as an Information
Assistant at the Library. Searching for meaningful opportunities to work on behalf of our community,
Shannon applied for and received the 2019 Pioneer Grant.

The Pioneer Grant invites Library employees to submit their enterprising ideas and lead the way to a
knowledgeable, inclusive, and engaged community empowered by the Library. Projects must be
innovative and beneficial to the community. The Friends of the Library provide funds to make the grant
project possible.

VITAL Conversations

Dennis Davoren and learner Adam Garmon

For the first of an ongoing series of conversations with our volunteers and learners, we asked VITAL volunteer LuAnne to chat with tutor Dennis Davoren and learner Adam Garmon about what makes their partnership successful. 

Adam has worked in construction and other hands-on trades, although these days he is on medical leave awaiting open-heart surgery. "I can make just about anything," he says. "I could build you a house." Dennis is retired, and while he has spent only a year as a VITAL tutor in literacy, prior to moving to Bloomington from Louisiana, he was a math tutor for more than a decade. Adam and Dennis have been meeting for weekly sessions since July 2018.

VITAL: Winner of the 2018 Tom Zupancic Literacy in Libraries Award 

Tom Zupancic Literacy in Libraries Award

The ILF Tom Zupancic Literacy in Libraries Award recognizes community advocacy for literacy by an individual or organization in cooperation with a library. VITAL received this accolade for promoting the importance of literacy and adult education at the library. Since VITAL’s inception in 1977, our program has helped over 6,500 learners achieve their personal learning goals.

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