Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett today announced the addition of an Amharic language books and materials collection at the Silver Spring Library, located at 8901 Colesville Road.
Amharic is a Semitic language spoken in Ethiopia, and it is the second-most spoken Semitic language in the world after Arabic. According to the 2010 U.S. Census and 2011 American Community Survey, more than 58,000 of Montgomery County’s residents were born in Africa. Ethiopians make up the largest segment of the County’s African immigrants.
“I am pleased about the addition of this collection to our library system,” said Leggett. “We will continue to address some common barriers such as language access that exist in many of our communities. Adding this Amharic language collection is a major step toward better meeting the needs of all our residents, and I am hopeful that other language collections will be added in the future.”
Included in the new collection will be childrens’ and young readers’ stories and language learning materials, adult fiction and nonfiction and a limited number of compact disks. In addition to this Amharic collection, Montgomery County’s public libraries currently house collections in Chinese, Spanish, Korean, Vietnamese, French and Russian. A Farsi language collection will be added to both the Gaithersburg and Praisner library branches in early winter.
“We are using demographic data and feedback from our residents in determining the make-up and location of our collections,” said Montgomery County Public Libraries Director Parker Hamilton. “Montgomery County’s diverse population makes it crucial for us to continually assess community needs and interests to support, encourage and inspire our customers.”
For more information about this collection, contact Mary Louise Daneri at 240-777-0031.
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