First I’d like to thank Senator Mike Gabbard, Councilwoman Kymberly Pine, State Librarian Stacey Aldrich, and members of the community for joining us to celebrate the 15th anniversary of the Kapolei Public Library.
My name is Frederick Amina, speaker and published author. Growing up, I was illiterate. After graduating from high school, I was still illiterate. Getting into a lot of trouble. But not anymore.
A few years ago, I experienced a turning point in my life. I had just lost my job because of an injury. I was watching a lot of TV. And that’s when it dawned on me that I myself have a compelling story to tell. That hey, I just might write a book to inspire others! But how would a guy like me go about writing a book? Soon after that, my faith led me here to Kapolei Library. I headed straight to the Reference Desk.
As you know, the Reference Desk is the key to the library’s vast resources; and behind the Reference Desk to manage these rich resources is the Librarian. But what you may not know is this: it takes 6 years of schooling, that is, a master’s degree in Library and Information Science to become a Librarian.
With their expertise, they knew exactly how to help me. They taught me basic computer skills, and how to access online materials that would guide me to write a book. And here it is folks, the finished product! The book is about faith, perseverance, and my personal journey. It’s available right here in Kapolei Library. It’s also on Amazon, and Barnes and Noble.
Now, we all know where the library is, but do we know what it can do for us besides lending us books? Just to name a few things: Computer tutoring, reference and information services for students and adults, online resources such as grant databases and gale courses, learning and recreational events for the family, and usage of computer equipment. These services are all at your finger tips. Just asked the Librarian.
You know, two years ago, I was in the ER for my son. As I looked on the wall, I saw 5 thank you cards from the doctor’s patients. I said to the doctor, “Wow, that’s a great gesture. Your patients actually wrote to thank you!” He said, “You know Fred. Out of the thousands of patients we treat here, those are the only 5 thank you cards we ever got. We don’t expect them, but they are very much appreciated.” So you see, just like the doctors and nurses who sometimes feel underappreciated, our Librarians may feel the same way; and could use a few thank you cards themselves. So on this occasion, this is my way of offering them, the librarians, my personal thank you card for all their hard work.
Finally, I’d like to acknowledge Peter Kanehiro and Liane Watanuki for inviting me to speak today. So i can tell you how the library system contributed to my success, and it can do the same for each and every one of you.
Fred “Bam” Amina