News from the Reference Desk Category: Children

Color Images of America in the Great Depression

In response to the economic turmoil of the Great Depression, President Franklin Roosevelt called for the creation of several assistance agencies. One of these was the Resettlement Administration (RA) created in 1935.  The Farm Security Administration (FSA) was created out of the RA in 1937. This agency was formed to help struggling farmers and sharecroppers.  It’s historical section was headed by Roy Stryker.  He organized a team of photographers who documented hardships across the country, especially in the Midwest and California.  Many of the black and white images they created such as Dorothea Lange’s “Migrant Mother” are well known.  Not so familiar are the color photographs that were taken of farmers, workers, and children.  In a new book called New Deal Photography, USA 1935-1943 author Peter Walther has created a survey of the work done by the photographers of the FSA.  These images vividly show the hard life of many ordinary people during a time of great struggle in America.  A few of the images can be seen here.  Walther’s book is can be found here at MPPL.

Talk to Your Teens About Money

It’s the time of year when many of us make decisions about our employee benefits for the coming year–“open enrollment” season. The Office of Financial Education, a part of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, offers this sound advice:

You can guide your children in finding the financial help they need

The financial world of today isn’t the same world you grew up in. New services and choices are being offered all the time. For your children to navigate the new financial world they’ll face, they need to know when to seek out information and how to evaluate it. Your children need practice making money choices, and they could use your guidance. At this age they may be earning some money of their own. Now, as you make benefits choices for next year, think about including your teenager in your decision-making process. You can help your teenager think about how to use information to make a good decision. If you have benefits fact sheets or Web sites from your employer, sit with your teenager and go through them. Talk through the questions your child has, and ask a few questions of your own:

  • What is the most important thing to think about for the family’s health care? Why?

  • Have there been any changes in the family since last year that could make a difference to health care? To insurance? To flexible spending dollars?

  • What could be the advantages or disadvantages of having benefits deducted from your paycheck, compared to paying the costs on your own?

  • How trustworthy is the information you receive? How would you look for further information?

You don’t have to do anything you wouldn’t do normally, when you make your benefits choices. Just by showing your teens how you approach enrollment, you’re helping them practice the decision-making process before their own paychecks are at stake. For more ideas, visit www.consumerfinance.gov/parents.

The Kid’s Pantry

The Kid’s Pantry is a non-for-profit organization that takes in donations of children’s items and donates them back out to the community.  Everything is given free of charge.  They are currently open year round on Wednesdays from 10am-2pm and Fridays from 10-11am.  They are located at 400 E. Gregory St., Mount Prospect, IL (224-715-4466).

They also have semi-annual giveaways in the spring and fall where all stock is set up in the gym.  They invite the community through multiple media outlets and word of mouth to come on a Friday evening and all day Saturday and receive what they need for free.

The Kid’s Pantry was started by two stay-at-home moms who have a passion for kids and the community.  Through the help of their church, they have been able to keep expanding, and to collect more items. Please visit them at their location, by email  (thekidspantry@gmail.com) or on Facebook to learn more about receiving from their collection or to offer donations.

Legal Assistance Referrals/Recomendaciones de Abogados

Speak to an Attorney for free, provided by Between Friends, an advocacy organization to help battered women and children of domestic violence. You can call to set an appointment at either at Rolling Meadows or a Chicago location. Please call for a specific location 773-274-5232 x23.

Also, please review the attached document to find dates of this service and free or low cost legal services:

legal-assistance_domestic-violence

Illinois School Report Card

The Illinois school report card has recently been released. The Chicago Tribune has created a search engine for easy access to specfic public school information: Illinois School Report Card.  Included in the database are: demographic profiles, passing rates on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test, the Prairie State Achievement Exam and the Illinois Alternate Assessment exam, as well as average ACT scores.