Here are some helpful links and information for assisting refugees and immigrants, compiled by librarians from, ALA Thinktank.

 The Berwyn Public Library does not endorse these organizations. They are listed for informational purposes only.

National Organizations Who Help Immigrants and Refugees:

Human Rights Watch  Defends the rights of people worldwide, spotlighting abuses and bringing perpetrators to justice.

ACLU For almost 100 years, the ACLU has worked to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed by the Constitution and laws of the United States.

The Center for Gender and Refugee Studies Protects the fundamental human rights of women, children, LGBTQ individuals, and others who flee persecution, combining sophisticated legal strategies with policy advocacy and human rights interventions to advance protections for refugees.

RAICES (The Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services) promotes justice by providing free and low-cost legal services to under served immigrant children, families and refugees in Central and South Texas. RAICES is the largest immigration non-profit in Texas with offices in Austin, Corpus, Dallas, Fort Worth, Houston, and San Antonio.

National Immigrant Justice Center The latest information about the Dreamers and DACA.

Smaller Organizations Who Work Directly With Separated and Refugee Families:

Annunciation House Has served the migrant, homeless, and economically vulnerable people of the border since 1978.

Detained Migrant Solidarity Committee: Are committed to organize, educate, and act for more humane  policies, practices, and public opinion in solidarity with detained refugees. Dedicated to nurturing a safe and welcoming community for all, regardless of borders.

Las Américas Immigrant Advocacy Center Envisions a country where all immigrants have access to high quality legal representation based on the principle of justice and human rights.

ALDEA: The People’s Justice Center Works to provide a holistic approach to meeting the multi-faceted needs of the immigrant community members through legal, social, educational, and medical services.

Phone Numbers of Elected Officials:

DOJ Comment Line: (202)353-1555

Chief of Staff, John Kelly – 202-456-1414

Attorney General, Jeff Sessions – 202-353-1555

DHS Secretary, Kirstjen Nielsen – 202-282-8495

Acting ICE Director, Thomas Homan – 1-866-DHS-2-ICE

HHS Secretary, Alex Azar – 202-690-7000

Acting Assistant ACF Secretary, Steven Wagner – 1-877-696-6775​

ORR Director, Scott Lloyd -202.401.9246

Koko the Gorilla

Koko the west lowland gorilla, who learned to sign over 1000 words taught to her by her trainer,  Penny Patterson, has died in her sleep at age 46.

Koko was born on July 4, 1971 at the San Francisco Zoo. As an infant, she was chosen by  Patterson to participate in a language research project. Koko showed an early aptitude for learning American Sign Language, and became a beloved international figure for her skill. She even created signs for words and phrases she was not taught.

In 1985, Koko was featured in National Geographic magazine, for her special relationship with a kitten named All Ball—the story of which is truly one of the sweetest and most pure expressions of love in our time.

Koko’s favorite picture book stories included The Three Little Kittens, and Puss ‘n’ Boots, .


Shark Week


Shark Week begins again! 

The annual week-long block of programs featuring sharks begins tonight. Originally began to draw attention to conservation efforts and the importance of this apex predator, shark week has become the longest running television event in modern history, according to the Discovery Channel.

In addition to watching the television programs scheduled:

shark week

Learn about organizations working to dispel myths and misunderstandings about sharks:

The Shark Trust

Shark Savers

SEE The Wild Shark Conservation

Quick Classes at The Berwyn Public Library

Quick Classes are one-time educational seminars taught by local experts. Some explore current events, literature, history, and science, while others teach practical skills and allow creative inquiry.

Course Offerings:

History 101:  Monday, May 15, 2017 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm


Learn about the history of one of Chicago’s most treasured museums and discover their latest outreach activities.

Art 101: Tuesday, May 16, 2017 11:00 am – 12:30 pm


Create a beautiful, original painting with the assistance of a professional artist. All materials are included. Note * registration is required and limited to first 20 registrants

Astronomy 101: Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm


On August 17, 2017 a total solar eclipse will be visible from the US for the first time in 30 years. Learn the best viewing places and how to enjoy this exciting event.

English 101: Wednesday May 17, 2017, 12:30 pm – 1:30 pm


Have you ever thought of writing creatively? Join us to create a visual collage and discover your inspiration in this wonderful hands-on session.

Berwyn 101: Thursday, May 18, 2017, 11:00 am – 12:00 pm


Learn all about the history of our great city of Berwyn!

For more information and to register, please visit us our

website The Berwyn Public Library

Happy Earth Day!


Earth Day began in 1970, in response to the massive damage from an oil spill in California in 1969. Today, citizens around the world meet and organize each year to volunteer, educate others, and show their support for our planet.

This year in particular, people around the globe will participate in science marches to show their support for science and education about climate change and preserving our environment.

The Chicago Tribune lists some fun family orientated volunteer activities!

Celebrate Earth Day with these activities!

Read more about the science marches here!

Please share in the comments how you plan to spend today!