With approximately 100 people in attendance, on Sunday, October 23, 2022, from 1 pm to 4 pm, the Bethel Public Library opened its recently renovated Teenspace and expanded Project Lab to the community.
The day began with a ribbon cutting ceremony with Representative Raghib Allie-Brennan (D-2) and the Friends of the Bethel Public Library at 2 pm.
Funding for the project was secured by Rep. Raghib Allie-Brennan, who worked with the Bethel Public Library to secure a $150,000 grant for nonprofit organizations. As Rep. Raghib mentioned in his remarks, he worked with the Friends of the Bethel Public Library and Bethel Library Director Megan Dean about “the needs in our community and their plan to create a safe space for teens to engage and learn through programming and Library support services.”
The process wasn’t easy. As Rep. Raghib mentioned, “I immediately went back to Hartford and worked the relationships I have forged over the past four years, working across the aisle and secured 150K to support this project. I also worked with AT& T to secure an additional 10K…The result is what we see today.”
He went on to identify the equipment funded by the grant. “3D printing, laser engraving, video and animation equipment. These are the technologies that some will be utilizing in their careers and can learn about them at the Library in a stress free and grade free environment.”
Rep. Raghib, a native of Bethel, continued, “A space where teens actually want to spend their time. I look back growing up in town and think how cool it would have been to have a space like this…It is gratifying to be able to drive resources to the town you love for the betterment of our youth and I look forward to continuing to support this space.”
The Bethel Public Library thanked Rep. Raghib for his support, and his goal of continuing to support these special spaces which make the Bethel Public Library a destination for all in the community.