Walking around town on a sunny Spring afternoon, the Lexplorers were pleased to find two multilingual displays of openness and acceptance.
The first was at the local Public Library, where they have filled a large bulletin board with the message “Libraries are for Everyone” in 24 languages.
In the middle of the bulletin board is a poem by children’s book author Julia Donaldson:
Everyone is welcome to walk through the door.
It really doesn’t matter if you’re rich or poor.
There are books in boxes and books on shelves.
They’re free for you to borrow, so help yourselves.
The original “Libraries Are For Everyone” idea and images came from Rebecca McCorkindale at hafuboti.com, and she has made the images available for all. With volunteer help from people around the world, the message has been translated into a long and growing list of languages. Since the Lexplorers are big fans of libraries and languages, we give this display a well-deserved Lexplorers Seal of Lexcellence.
The other multilingual display we encountered was a colorful yard sign with the message “No matter where you are from, we’re glad you’re our neighbor.” The two-sided sign has the English message in the middle of each side, sandwiched by the same message in Spanish, Arabic, Armenian, and Chinese.
The original Welcome Your Neighbor sign was put up by the Immanuel Mennonite Church in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Their hand-painted sign was in English, Spanish, and Arabic, the three primary languages of the church’s neighborhood. The message has since been translated into a long list of other languages, and signs in many combinations of languages are available.
It goes without saying that the Lexplorers also give the multilingual Welcome Your Neighbors signs the Lexplorers Seal of Lexcellence.