Trumbull Library System has announced the addition of a community social work intern to its staff beginning this fall.

The social work intern will assist the community as the first point of contact for patrons seeking information or assistance with community and/or mental health services, excluding psychoanalysis and diagnosis.

“The library, as safe space means more than ever, we have to be prepared to meet the needs of all members of our community - from the retiree, the new homeowner, to those who have just moved back home, and those not sure how they will make it through next month. It is our responsibility as a public library to equalize access where we can, and we hope our new intern removes barriers and stigma to mental health and social services,” said Adult Services Librarian Amara Johnson.

“When our community hurts, we hurt, and when our community is strong, we are all strong.”

Jennette Vining, a graduate student at Sacred Heart University, will begin this month. Vining currently works full time for the Connecticut Department of Labor and is a longtime resident of Bridgeport. Prior to starting with the library, Vining took part in telehealth group and individual training sessions in preparation to meet the needs of the community in a virtually setting. Vining is available to assist patrons of the Trumbull Library System.

“She can help with needs such as food, housing, addiction, health services, job loss, places to find employment, and mental health topics, as well as connect patrons to additional resources in collaboration with Trumbull Social Services and the Mary J. Sherlach Counseling Center,” said Johnson.

Appointments can be made by completing the Virtual Session Inquiry form found on the library’s website, trumbull-ct.gov/FormCenter/Library-6/MSW-Virtual-Session-Inquiry-60.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these sessions are conducted virtually, weekdays only. Sessions are private and confidential. The social work intern will be with the library for the 2020-21 school year.

The library advises that if there is an emergency, to call 911.