Specialist Librarians Christine Forbes, RN, MLIS, and Laura Giacobbe, MLIS, recently presented their research at the New Jersey Library Association (NJLA) Conference held May 31-June 2 at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City, NJ.
Forbes’ presentation, “Poetry as a Tool For Self-Care,” examined the ways in which poetry has been shown to enhance wellness and assist in preventing burnout in fields such as medicine, nursing, social work, counseling, and education. Forbes, who is certified as a facilitator of the Institute for Poetic Medicine’s “Poetry as a Tool for Wellness” program, advocated for librarians and library workers to use poetry as a tool of self-care in her presentation.
Giacobbe presented “How Libraries Can Work to End the Legacy of White Supremacy and Promote Racial Equity,” which examined the history of systemic racism in libraries. Attendees learned about the emotional trauma inflicted on workers of color, allyship, and community involvement in this critical work. Giacobbe’s research is in the area of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) in libraries. She is a certified racial healing facilitator who was trained in the method of Racial Healing Rx by Dr. Gail Christopher. She regularly presents on the topic of white supremacy in libraries.
Established in 1890, NJLA, the oldest and largest library organization in New Jersey advocates for library services for New Jersey residents, provides education and networking for library staff, and supports intellectual freedom and access to books, music, movies, and information. Each year, NJLA, NJASL, and NJLTA invite all types of librarians and library workers, supporters, and vendors to participate in engaging discussion, thoughtful workshops and presentations, networking and professional development during a three-day conference.