Camden Conference event series at Freeport Community Library
In January, the Freeport Community Library will host a series of informative events related to the 2017 Camden Conference topic “Refugees and Global Migration: Humanity’s Crisis.”
The 30th Annual Camden Conference will feature discussions with speakers chosen for their firsthand knowledge and strong views on migrant and refugee issues. These discussions, held in Camden Feb. 17-19, will be live streamed to the Strand Theatre in Rockland, the University of Maine Hutchinson Center in Belfast and the University of Southern Maine Lee Auditorium in Portland. Discussions will explore the varied causes of the current international crisis and the unique challenges that come with accepting immigrants from particular countries, regions, and demographic groups. Speakers will also examine the political, economic, and social consequences of population flight for the countries they have abandoned in the Middle East, Africa and Central America.
Going beyond the present crisis, conference speakers will examine the factors that will likely drive migration in the coming decades — from dramatic demographic shifts to climate change, natural disasters, and ethnic, territorial, and political conflicts. Speakers will discuss the role that should be played by the United States. For more information go to camdenconference.org
In the month of January, the Freeport Community Library will host five events related to this year’s Camden Conference topic “Refugees and Global Migration: Humanity’s Crisis.” Four of the events are scheduled for the Friday evenings in January beginning at 6:30 p.m. In addition, the library will show a film on Thursday, Jan. 19 at 1 p.m. The schedule of the Camden Conference events hosted by Freeport Community Library includes:
On Jan. 6 beginning at 6:30 p.m. Susan Roche, Executive Director of the Immigrant Legal Advocacy Project, will discuss ILAP’s work helping low-income immigrants improve their legal status and working for more just and humane laws and policies affecting immigrants. As Maine’s only statewide provider of free and low-cost comprehensive immigration legal assistance for low-income residents, ILAP helps Maine’s immigrants keep their families together, gain protection from persecution and domestic violence, attain residency and work authorization and become U.S. citizens. Roche graduated from Northeastern University School of Law and is admitted to the Maine Bar. She is an expert on family based immigration, remedies for non-citizen domestic violence and crime victims, and removal defense and has been an invited presenter at regional and national conferences of the American Immigration Lawyers Association. To learn more about ILAP, visit ilapmaine.org
On Jan. 13 at 6:30 p.m., the library invites the public to a community discussion of the book “The Good Braider.” New Hampshire author Terry Farish will be on hand-on to answer questions, and FCL staff person Laura Collard will facilitate the discussion. A YALSA Best Book of the year and American Library Association Outstanding Book for the College Bound and Lifelong Learner selection, “The Good Braider,” is a free-verse novel that follows teenaged Viola on a journey from her home in war ravaged Sudan to Cairo and finally to her new home in Portland. Copies of “The Good Braider” are available through your local library’s inter-library loan system. To learn more about the author, Terry Farish, go to terryfarish.com
Jan. 19 at 1 p.m. the library will screen the 2002 film “In This World,” Rated R and directed by acclaimed filmmaker Michael Winterbottom, “In This World” is a story about two Afghani refugees and cousins, Enayat (Enayatullah) and Jamal (Jamal Udin Torabi.) The family of the two boys pays 20,000 dollars to a people smuggler in order to get the them to London. The film follows their difficult progress as they travel through many countries, learn to trust each other, and survive various modes of transportation. “In This World” was screened at the London Film Festival and won the Golden Bear at the 2003 Berlin Film Festival. In this drama the film’s hero — 16 year old Jamal — plays himself as we follow him from Shamshatoo Refugee Camp in Pakistan on his land and sea journey to London.
On Jan. 20 at 6:30 p.m., the library welcomes alumni and current students in The Telling Room’s award winning Young Writers and Leaders program. A nonprofit writing center based in Portland, The Telling Room was awarded the 2015 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award by First Lady Michele Obama last fall at The White House. YWL is a yearlong program for international high school students in Portland and South Portland. Come listen to their stories of immigration and assimilation from the anthology “A Season for Building Houses.” To learn more about The Telling Room, go to thetellingroom.org
On Jan. 27 at 6:30 p.m. the library will host Ekhlas Ahmed share her own personal story of escape and relocation in a presentation titled “A Bridge Between.” A refugee and a civil rights activist, Ahmed was 14 years old when she fled Darfur, Sudan with her family. They lived two years in Egypt before being resettled in Portland in 2005. In high school, Ahmed worked hard to learn English, navigate contrasting cultures and graduate with honors. She also co-founded the Darfur Youth of Tomorrow, an organization that raises awareness of the genocide and creates a space for survivors to gather, reflect and support one another. The Darfur Youth of Tomorrow has taken Ahmed to a number of different places, including the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., where she was invited to speak about the genocide by the UN Refugee Agency and read a poem about her homeland. Here in her new home, Ahmed teaches English at Casco Bay High School, her alma mater. She also runs a program called Make It Happen, which prepares multilingual students for college.
For more information, visit freeportlibrary.com
This January at FCL
• On Jan. 6 at 6:30 p.m. Susan Roche, Executive Director of the Immigrant Legal Advocacy Project, will discuss ILAP’s work helping low-income immigrants.
• On Jan. 13 at 6:30 p.m., the library invites the public to a community discussion of the book “The Good Braider.”
• On Jan. 19 at 1 p.m. the library will screen the 2002 film “In This World” about two Afghani refugees and cousins.
• On Jan. 20 at 6:30 p.m. the library welcomes alumni and current students in The Telling Room’s award-winning Young Writers and Leaders program.
• On Jan. 27 at 6:30 p.m. the library will host refugee and civil rights activist Ekhlas Ahmed share her own personal story of escape and relocation in a presentation titled “A Bridge Between.”