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The Springfield-Greene County Library District worked with the Community Partnership of the Ozarks to identify the issues that will discussed over the next three weeks during the Food for Thought series. The first program will focus on “Fighting Fair in the Culture Wars.”
"And our description of that is that our community is growing more diverse and becoming so. What will it take to embrace our differences and maintain civility? What are the repercussions if we don't?" she said.
Lorraine Sandstrom is branch manager at the Library Center. She says the second program—on October 10th—is titled “Constantly Connected: Social Discourse in a Multi-Tasking World.” Panelists and community members will discuss how our ability and desire to be constantly connected is affecting the fabric of our community.
The final program in the Food for Thought Series on October 17this called “The 50 Percent: Poverty in our Community.”
"Fifty percent of our citizens live at or below the poverty level. What are the consequences and the impact on our community and the organizations committed to serving our impoverished neighbors?" she said.
Sandstrom says the library is a natural place to host the series since it serves as a sort of community center.
Each program will begin at 6 with a complimentary meal of soup, bread, cheese and dessert catered by the Branch Bistro & Catering, a program of Victory Mission Trade School.
"It kind of breaks the ice a little bit--puts us all on common footing and common ground if we're all eating, you know, the same soup and adds kind of I think a warmth to that atmosphere. The point of this is a civil discussion. It's an opportunity for us to, as a community, begin the discussion. This is not the solution meeting. This is just a chance for people to start hearing about these topics from various angles so that they can kind of absorb that, and it helps them participate in the discussion in the community," she said.
The first program in the Food for Thought Series is this Thursday night (10/3) from 6 to 8. You need to register by calling 882-0714.
For KSMU News, I’m Michele Skalicky.