The San Diego Public Library Foundation will host a virtual year-end event Tuesday featuring a librarian leading a guided origami crane workshop as part of the foundation’s Cranes for Peace project.

The foundation and library leadership will open the 5 p.m. event with an open discussion about how San Diego’s libraries, with the help of the Library Foundation, pivoted in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and what supporters and the community as a whole can expect to see in 2021.

“We typically celebrate in person, but it was clear that wouldn’t be the case this year,” said Patrick Stewart, CEO of the San Diego Public Library Foundation. “Still, it was important to create space for us and our supporters to join in celebration over the incredible work we accomplished in 2020.”

According to the foundation, the pandemic has proven that libraries offer so much more than books: They are hubs of access, resources and information that provide the technology and tools necessary for all San Diegans to remain or become connected when things like education and work transition to remote situations.

Participants in the event will learn about the ways the foundation and the library worked together to provide for the community through the challenges presented by the pandemic.

Afterward, the Cranes for Peace activity will create a space to set positive intentions of hope and good fortune for the year to come, as is the symbolic meaning connected to cranes. As the symbol of hope and good fortune, Japanese legend says that anyone who folds 1,000 paper cranes — or orizuru — will be granted a wish by the gods, happiness and eternal luck.

The library’s Cranes for Peace program developed from a desire to set positive and hopeful intentions for the new year, said Natalie Ganz, chief strategy and engagement officer at the foundation. “It’s a fun environment for the community of library lovers to learn something new, interact with library and foundation leadership, and look forward to the future.”

Participants will learn how to fold cranes and completed orizuru can then be dropped at library book drops throughout the city to be included in the display.

To conclude, participants will have the opportunity to ask questions, discuss their own visions for 2021 and be reminded of ways they can support this continued effort into the new year.

The San Diego Library Foundation was created to foster community investment in the San Diego Public Library system. It is intended to help provide access to resources supporting literacy, work readiness and lifelong learning, helping to ensure equal opportunities for success for all.

Registration for the event, which begins at 5 p.m., can be found here: www.eventbrite.com/e/ring-in-a-hopeful-new-year-with-the-san-diego-public- library-foundation-tickets-129902374499.

–City News Service

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