Volunteer Spotlight - Elizabeth Hughes

Liz Hughes at the Educational Park Branch

Introducing Elizabeth Hughes

Elizabeth (Liz) Hughes is one of Educational Park Library's dedicated Friends of the Library volunteers. Without her weekly volunteer service, which keeps our lobby book sales organized and the sales shelves stocked, our community would miss out on many fantastic adult and children's programs we provide thanks to the financial support of our Friends of the Library organization. We are so lucky to have Elizabeth with us, and come to find out, she feels the same way about us too. A long-time resident in San Jose, Liz has had a lifetime of unique experiences, many of which most of us will never face. Before Liz found her way to Educational Park Library, she struggled through homelessness, health issues and despair. She's was and is no stranger to the cruelties of discrimination that comes when people see you as "homeless," and lump you into all the stereotypes that come with that word. However, this fact never prevented her from wanting to give back to her community. Today, she is a resident in our local, section 8 housing neighborhood, and she exemplifies what amazing gifts you can offer to society, regardless of your living situation. We are very lucky to have Liz as one of our Friends of the Library volunteers.

Submitted by Librarian, Melissa Maglio from the Educational Park Branch Library

A Chat with Liz

As a teenager... I moved with my parents to San José. I graduated from Andrew Hill High School.

My first job... besides babysitting, was working at Frontier Village when I was 16. I worked at the fish pond where I would have to gut and clean fish for park visitors. Not a job I was very fond of.

I am most proud of... volunteering at the library where I thought I would not be wanted because I use a walker to get around.

My biggest challenge... is accepting the inspections we must go through living in section 8 housing.

My role models... are library staff who get to work with books.

Libraries are... important!

My favorite book, movie, and song... The Harry Potter book series and the Stephanie Plum book series; favorite movie is "Love Actually"; song is "Here Comes the Sun", and "We Are the Champions".

I volunteer because... I'd be depressed. I just love being around books.

If I wasn't volunteering... my dream is to get my book written and be able to sell it and make enough money to help other women and children get off the streets. Even when I was going through homelessness myself I still wanted to help those going through it too.

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