Children Services at Mosholu Library on Hold for Now

Children Services at Mosholu Library on Hold for Now
SEVERAL THOUSAND YOUNG people have taken advantage of the children’s section at the Mosholu Library (pictured).
Photo by Stephanie Luciano

Mosholu Public Library has no current children’s librarian, causing the neighborhood depository to suspend many of the children’s programming and leaving them with no story time.

The library on 285 E. 205th St. near the East 205th St./Norwood subway station is experiencing a staff shortage that the community is unhappy about. Within a month, two children’s librarians have either left or have been transferred, according to resident Elisabeth von Uhl. “As a parent and library donor and lover, I am infuriated by this gap in services,” said von Uhl.

“This isn’t a shortage as much of terrible timing,” said Angela Montefinise, a spokesperson from the New York Public Library. “Two children’s librarians are needed to operate a branch of Mosholu’s size. It is extremely rare to have both children’s librarians leave a branch at the same time. Generally, the Library works hard to avoid situations like this, but in this unique case, it could not be helped.”

The branch typically offers seven programs a week. While they actively recruit the best possible candidates, the branch continues to offer a drawing class for kids once a week. According to Montefinise, the moment a children’s librarian is hired, programming will be restored.

“The more help, it’s easier,” says Valerie Vlado who visits the library with her granddaughter. “They help and show me where the books are.”

Overall, program attendance at the branch is up 23 percent from previous years. The New York Public Library is working on filling up these specialty positions.

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