Catalyst Connect  
August 2013
Library Activists Comment on Proposed Library Closures
Concerned residents of Miami-Dade County are engaged in a fight to save nearly half of its libraries, which were at risk of closures under the County's proposed budget. If all the closures were to proceed, it would be the largest cut to a public library system in US history. On a rainy Saturday, after Mayor Carlos Gimenez had told local media that the "age of the library is probably ending," nearly 300 residents of all ages gathered to support the library system and express their displeasure in the proposed cuts. After coming together, the Mayor has stated that he will not be shutting down all of the libraries he proposed. But that is still not good enough; we still have an uphill battle ahead of us. There is still a proposal to drastically downsize our libraries in both staff and hours, which we cannot support.

To support our cause, please sign the online petition at, join the #SaveOurLibrary hashtag on Facebook or contribute to the larger #SaveOurLibrary hashtag on Twitter. For more information, visit

Meet Our New Prosperity Staff 


Debbie Agurcia joins us as a Community Health Worker, based in Homestead. She completed her Masters in Social Work this year and has done internships with South Miami Hospital and Miami Dade Public Schools. She also worked as an Emergency Team Coordinator for 4 years at Homestead Hospital. Debbie is fluent in English and Spanish.

Jose Loya joins us as Financial Counseling Manager. Jose has solid experience in the financial arena, both private sector and nonprofit. He comes to us from the United Way Center for Financial Stability at Branches where he was a Financial Coach. Prior work experience was with Bank of America and Neighborhood Housing Services where he was a VISTA. Jose graduated from Brown University in 2010 and did his thesis on the impact of mortgage foreclosures in the Latino community. Jose is fluent in English and Spanish.

Gerline Lubin joins us as a Community Health Worker and will be based in Homestead. For the past 5 years Gerline has been working with S.O.S. in Homestead to provide crisis intervention to families who are involved in domestic and or sexual violence. She has extensive experience in the Homestead and Florida City areas. Gerline is pursuing her degree in Business Administration. She is fluent in English, French and Creole. 
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Lending Our Voices to Advocate Against Library Closings


Today, I tried to imagine a Miami without libraries. In my mind's eye, I saw a young girl, seeking infinite possibilities with increasingly limited resources. I saw a young man hoping to expand his opportunities by reading something inspirational, motivational or informative but there was no place for him to do so.  I saw community leaders looking for a free meeting space to engage their neighbors in a discussion about how to collaboratively meet their communities' challenges. Read more.

Take Action for Our Libraries:   

Town Hall Meeting 

September 3, 2013 from 6-8PM

Location: Florida City, City Hall, 404 W Palm Dr., Florida City, FL 33034

Board of County Commissioners Budget Meeting
September 10, 2013 at 5PM
Location: 111 NW 1st Street, 2nd Floor Commission Chambers, Miami, FL 33128

Contact: Fara C. Diaz at 305-375-1293 

Upcoming Community Events:
Don't miss out on these great events!

Do We Have the Wrong Idea About Charity?
A Regional Presentation by Dan Pallotta 
September 11th at 4pm
Broward Center for the Performing Arts 
Amaturo Theater

MDEAT Economic Development Summit 2013
   September 13th, 9am-3:30pm
Miami-Dade Public Library
101 W Flagler, Miami, FL

Leonard Turkel Nonprofit Network Workshop:
New Partners, New Markets
Speaker: Carol Coletta
   September 25th, 8:30am-11:30am
  UM Newman Alumni Center
6200 San Amaro Dr.
Coral Gables, FL 
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