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In Commemoration of World Refugee Day - JUNE 20, 2017

World Refugee Day, commemorated around the world on June 20, offers an occasion to raise awareness of the millions of people displaced from their homes each year because of war and fear of persecution. In recognition of this day and to remind us of the civic values we all share, whether immigrant, refugee, or native born, Hartford Public Library is hosting a series of public events that we invite you to attend.  

Tuesday, June 20, beginning promptly at 11 a.m., we will host a Naturalization Ceremony in collaboration with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Department of Justice and Hartford Public Schools.  Honorable Donna F. Martinez, U.S. Magistrate Judge, will administer the Oath of Allegiance to America's newest citizens.  Lieutenant Governor Nancy Wyman will provide opening remarks along with other speakers, Scott Jackson, Commissioner Department of Labor, Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez, Superintendent, Hartford Public Schools; and, Honorable Mayor Luke Bronin who will lead the audience in an American folk song.  

Saturday, June 24, 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  Film and Discussion: Pushing the Elephant (2:00 – 4:00 PM) tells the story of a mother and daughter reunited after a decade separated by civil war. In the late 1990s, Rose Mapendo lost everything to the violence that engulfed the Democratic Republic of Congo. She emerged from the suffering advocating peace and reconciliation.

Wednesday, June 28, 11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. You’re invited to join a special Immigrant Advisory Group session featuring a panel of immigrant and refugee young adults who will share their challenges and highpoints of settling in Hartford.  Additionally, the local programs that supported their professional development and success will be present.  Speakers include: a Hartford High School graduate now employed at Pratt and Whitney after successfully completing the Precision Manufacturing Program at Manchester Community College; two Capital Community College graduates whose internships and further college studies via the Travelers Edge Program resulted in full-time positions at the company. A Career Beginnings Program recent high school graduate now enrolled in college.  RSVP ncaddigan@hplct.org

We Belong Here Hartford: In keeping with this theme, Andy Hart’s photographic celebration of Hartford’s immigrant and refugee communities will be on display along the Main Floor corridor leading to the Center for Contemporary Culture auditorium.