Denver Public Library hires social worker


Denver Public Library

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DENVER -- A growing trend in the library field is the position of social worker.

“We were just at a North American Library conference and found facilities around the nation are hiring social workers who can help staff and the public deal with people who find more than books at the library,” said Michelle Jeske, City Librarian.

“The homeless population know they can get off the streets, read a book, stay warm or cool, and get a chance to use the Internet. In short, the need for someone to interface with the homeless is immense.”

On the streets, the news was met with understanding … a trio of homeless men sitting outside love the concept.

“There is a lot of need out here and what better place to find out about service than from someone who has worked with the homeless community,” said A man with the hobo backpack.

One family Elissa Hardy—who is the library social worker—was helping is looking for work. They're new to town and the mom is expecting. But she has five kids already.

“I managed for McDonald’s before, but that was in Texas,” said the mom-to-be.

The hope is that the program, which is funded for two years, will continue to be a page turn in the right direction.

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