Investing in Youth Learning
Southern Wasco County Library & South Wasco Youth Programs / Maupin
“It’s easy to overlook small, rural areas. I’m just really grateful that people want to invest in this community. I really appreciate that they value culture, they value curiosity and knowledge, and they value what a library is to a community.”
Director, Southern Wasco County Library
Youth in rural, isolated Maupin and surrounding southern Wasco County communities face a long–standing opportunity gap, but strong community engagement and support from OCF are creating new pathways to success.
Maupin’s public library—the state’s second smallest at only 871 square feet—was recently replaced by a modern 3,000–square–foot facility. Mayor Lynn Ewing emphasizes the library’s importance as a resource for local students: “They’re very excited about having a comfortable place where they can use the internet for their school projects.”
South Wasco Youth Programs (SWYP) provides after–school, summer and STEAM (science, tech, engineering, arts and math) programming. “The programs offer things these kids are not going to get anywhere else,” says director Amber Anderson. “That’s the number–one mission and focus for me.” Testing in past years has shown that SWYP participants maintain reading proficiency across the summer break and also score higher on math tests. SWYP recently moved into a new building that provides more space and allows SWYP to expand art and music programs.
“We were thrilled to have OCF involved,” says Mayor Ewing. Amber agrees: “Having OCF’s support—knowing that we both have the same vision and the same values for these kids—is really important.”