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Tenth Annual Report, Summer 2011

La Biblioteca de San Agustinillo

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In December of this year, the Biblioteca de San Agustinillo will celebrate its tenth anniversary. December 15, 2001, then Representante Municipal Rafael Cabrera (QEPD), Suplente Chera Méndez, and founders Nancy Foertsch, Harper Jones, Helen McNamara, and Carole Reedy cut the ribbon and opened the doors to the La Biblioteca de San Agustinillo in the Casa Municipal. The first books were taken out that day although we only had a hundred or two! But, we grew and grew. Here we are, ten years later, still going strong, and we hope to continue serving the community, especially with new projects for the children.

One of our most successful projects has been our participation in the national art contest, 'El Niño y La Mar.' Since the first year in which we participated, 2003, we have had winners every year except for one, an unbelievable feat since over a thousand drawings are presented every year in the state of Oaxaca. This is a national contest; every state in Mexico is awarded 3 winners... first, second and third places plus honorable mentions. YES, THIS YEAR WE HAVE YET ANOTHER WINNER... FIRST PLACE!!! 10-year-old LIZBETH RODRIGUEZ CORTEZ (the locals call her 'Gina,' daughter of Lidio y Shana, niece of Teresa and Sandor). This is the second time we have had a first-place winner. In 2009, our Cielo Fajardo Rodriguez took first in the state of Oaxaca. We are especially proud of Lizbeth. She has participated every year, trying her best, and now she has been rewarded. The first place winners in each state (accompanied by one parent) are awarded a one week tour of México City, Veracruz, and Puerto Vallarta. They swim with the dolphins, visit the President's wife, stay in deluxe hotels, and fly from destination to destination. An experience of a lifetime. The library is proud to sponsor our children in this program. Special thanks this year go to Kate Kelley, Midge Tuck, and Paulina Van Drent, all of whom assisted the children with their paintings, made all the preparations for the 'days of drawing,' and cleaned all those brushes and palates! Paulina organized the event and even personally delivered the paintings to the coordinator in Oaxaca City. MIL GRACIAS.

All of you remember the animated film 'EL GLOBO ROJO DE SAN AGUSTINILLO' (if not, please view it on YOUTUBE), produced by the children of San Agustinillo, under the direction of John and Kelly Mistruzzi. The fantastic news is that John and Kelly have settled in San Agustinllo and will continue with the animation program. This fall they hope to coordinate with DeNel Rehberg Sedo, who is planning reading and storytelling workshops for the children. John and Kelly hope to develop the stories created by the children into animated films.

We have had a lot of help from tourists and visitors this year. Laura's mother, Lyndy Pooley, spent several months on the coast. She dedicated many hours every week assisting in the library. She is a ball of energy, just like her daughter! Many thanks, also, to visitor Fred who helped Laura with 'manly chores,' like painting the outside wall and other physical tasks.

Yolanda's daughter, Yolanda Paulsen, a sculptor in wax and bronze, spent two days in April with our children, making birds from paper maché and wire.

Unfortunately, our music program did not work out. Yolanda Quintana spent many months with the very amiable and knowledgeable music teacher trying to create an interest in the program. But, there just doesn't seem to be the interest nor discipline for this type of program. Perhaps in the future. Right now, we will concentrate on the art and reading programs, with which we have had success. And, of course, we will always try new things. We are not discouraged.

Please give your heartfelt thanks next time you visit the library to our loyal volunteers Paulina Van Drent, Laura Pooley, Jorg Eggen, Midge Tuck, James Arnott, and Juan. Both Jorg and Juan perform maintenance duties to keep everything dry in the rainy season, as well as repairs all year long. Thanks also to Laya Danahee Bourguignon who supervised the library over Semana Santa when our 'regulars' were busy with their own businesses. And, thanks to always-enthusiastic Lupita Lopez for her continued help.

We take pride in our excellent selection of books in (almost) all languages. We appreciate your donations, which enhance the vacation experience for many visitors.

Since DAY 1, the library has been supported by donations. There are a few undying, loyal supporters that we would like to recognize. Through the past 10 years they have consistently opened their hearts and pockets to us with donations of time, books, and/or money! TONS OF THANKS to Mike and Kate Kelley and their entire family, Wally and Barbara, Mike McGuire and Lorie de Canada, Mike and Rita Thomson (Rita, the 'mad' clothes shopper!), Kathy Kaye, Heidi Hough, Phyllis Kopriva, Bob and Krista Collins and The Walkers, Adam Wood, Jan Modeland (QEPD), George Klein (QEPD), Aimee Pickar, Pastor Larry Pickar and his congregation, Jill Hirt, Julien Pardinella, Ignacio Cervantes. Yolanda Quintana, Desiree Herrmann, Cati Ruvalcaba, Betty Lewis, Mary Abernathy, Ali Leon, Carol Dmitrash, Bassia and David Bar-Chai, Mathew Olson, Sylvie and Marcelleno, and Dick and Brenda Fleetham. Thanks to all of them and ALL OF YOU.

Please continue to support us with your donations of books, supplies for children's projects, and financial assistance. Anything you are able to give is appreciated by the community of San Agustinillo.

Books can be sent to:

Paulina Van Drent, APDO Postal 2, Pochutla, Oaxaca, México 70900
Cash donations can be given to any library volunteer.
Paypal donations to: sanagustinillo(AT)comcast.net
Checks MADE OUT TO NANCY FOERTSCH and mailed to Nancy Foertsch, 3729 South Morgan, Chicago, IL 60609
MIL GRACIAS POR TODO SU APOYO! Nos vemos en la playa.

Carole Reedy

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