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Meet three of our Reading Buddies volunteers!

by Katie R

Meet Emma!

Emma is an energetic and devoted volunteer who likes to give back to the community by participating in the Reading Buddies program. She fell in love with the program after her very first session where she helped her shy little buddy improve his reading skills and explore different genres of books. “My favourite part of Reading Buddies is going out into the library and choosing books because I can hear the improvement when the little buddies read aloud and choose new book topics.”

Emma found helping children discover a love for reading a very rewarding experience and has been a Big Buddy for over a year.

Without volunteers like Emma the Reading Buddies program would not be as successful as it is now. Emma, thank you so much for all the hard work and enthusiasm you bring with you ever time you come to Reading Buddies!

Meet Kiran!

Kiran has been a volunteer with the Calgary Public Library since the summer of 2011 and over the past year and a half she has since volunteered for every youth volunteer program and countless special events! She enjoys volunteering because she considers it to be a unique opportunity that contributes to her self-esteem and confidence. It also helps her build leadership skills and life experience. “I think putting a little time in for volunteering and gaining some valuable skills whether personal or practical is a good asset for the future. Giving back to the community makes you feel accomplished in a way.” Kiran’s favourite part of volunteering for Reading Buddies is the mentorship aspect of the program and sharing great books with her Little Buddies.

Thank you Kiran, for your flexibility, enthusiasm and teamwork! You are a truly valuable member of the Calgary Public Library’s team of youth volunteers!


Meet Richard!

Richard comes from a long line of dedicated Reading Buddies volunteers. He has been participating in the program for over 2 years and genuinely enjoys working with his Little Buddy, whoever that may be. This session, Richard has fostered a strong bond with his buddy and the pair can be seen during buddy reading time having more fun with books than anyone else in the library. Richard always has a smile on his face and a kind word for everyone, endearing him to both the Little Buddies and fellow volunteers. He goes the extra mile by sharing treats with the group, fostering the fun and welcoming environment that Reading Buddies strives to provide for participants and volunteers.

Thank you Richard for your dedication and hard work! Volunteers like you are what make Calgary Public Library such a great place to be!

To learn more about volunteering for the Reading Buddies program and other youth volunteer opportunities please contact Katie at 403-221-2036 or katie.radke@calgarypubliclibrary.com.

Congrats to our Library Volunteers!

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

On February 14, Volunteer Calgary announced the 97 nominees for their 17th Annual Leadership Awards in a special celebration held at Cardel Theatre. These awards celebrate the contributions and accomplishments of outstanding volunteers in our community. The awards recognize leaders of volunteer programs, outstanding youth volunteers, innovative volunteer programs, exceptional individual volunteers and more.

The Calgary Public Library’s nominees are Maureen Proctor, nominated for the Heart of Calgary Award, and Sarena Dharshi, nominated for the Leaders of Tomorrow Award. Our Learning Advantage program was also nominated by one of our volunteers in the Leaders in Volunteer Engagement Award category.

We would like to congratulate and thank our nominees for their outstanding contributions to the Library and in our communities!

Heart of Calgary nominee Maureen Proctor (left) and Volunteer Calgary staff Lori Deluca, and Leaders of Tomorrow nominee Sarena Dharshi

Long-time Libraries in Residence volunteers

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

Dedicated and long-time Calgary Public Library volunteers, Diane Valcourt (left) and Mary Mooney, have been bringing the gift of books and reading to the residents of Southwood Care Centre every week for over 20 years!

Libraries in Residence is a unique program that brings large quantities of library books into senior care centers across the city to provide access to seniors who may not normally be able to visit the library. Every week at Southwood Care Centre, Mary or Diane wheel a cart of large print books around from resident to resident, distributing books and visiting with seniors along the way. Mary’s favourite part of volunteering with the program is “the pleasure of visiting and discussing books with so many varied people. The residents are genuinely appreciative and many don’t have much pleasure in their lives”.

It's obvious that Diane and Mary care a lot about the program and the residents it serves, taking the time to ensure each resident who would like a visit and a library book (or many!), receive one of each every week. They both believe it feels good to help others especially those who may not have the mobility needed to go outside and do the things they used to do. The time and care that Mary and Diane contribute are much appreciated not only by the residents and staff at Southwood Care, but also the Calgary Public Library who is proud to have such dedicated, long term volunteers!

Triple Play

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

Liam (center), and his younger twin brothers, Harris and Owen, have been participants in the Read With Me program at Calgary Public Library for three years. They work with their volunteers, Brita Wahl, Senthil Gnanasambandam and Ruth Halford, respectively, for an hour each week at a Library branch to develop their literacy skills.

Ruth and Owen have been a pair since November 2009. The boys’ father, Bryan, states, 'Owen loves Ruth. She’s amazing. She makes it fun for him to learn and he always comes back in a good mood after their sessions.’ Owen confirms this: ‘It’s fun working with Ruth and really educating. Sometimes, we do games and hard mazes and stuff like that. When we have to read, she picks books that I like and that are funny.’

Brita and Liam have worked together since September 2010. In Liam’s words, ‘It’s been good…in lots of ways. We do reading and she’ll play games with me. She’s really nice and she helps me with the words and stuff.’ Bryan adds, ‘Brita has a calm, peaceful personality, which is exactly what Liam needs, especially in his learning. She keeps him engaged and focused.’

Senthil and Harris began their match in January 2012. Bryan shared that since starting work with Senthil, Harris now loves reading and does so independently at home daily. Harris confers, ‘Senthil is really good. I really like him a lot. He really helps me a lot. I’ve improved my reading since I started working with him and now I’m figuring-out more hard words. He’s really nice and lets me pick books I like.’

All three volunteers feel the boys are benefiting from their help in the program and enjoy their sessions together. Brita says she loves working with Liam and ‘It’s been fun getting to learn something new each session…I’ve learned a lot about sharks, scorpions and Star Wars’.

Bryan is unequivocal about the help provided to his children by the volunteers: ‘We are so happy and amazed by the program and so appreciative of all the folks who volunteer.’

Thank you, Ruth, Brita, and Senthil for all your efforts and sharing your love of literacy with these children!

Meet Ram!

by Katie R - 0 Comment(s)

Ram has a PhD in Mechanical Engineering and taught for many years at the University of Calgary. He joined our volunteer team on January 6th 2011 as a Computer Technology Coach at the Louise Riley Library. Ram is very popular with customers attending the drop-in coaching sessions every Monday afternoon. He hit a system record one afternoon, helping 20 customers in one session!

Ram has also volunteered for a number of special events at both the Central Library and the Louise Riley location and was a Library ambassador during our New Central Library engagement process. We also see Ram regularly here at the Memorial Park Library where he has been assisting the Calgary Public Library Foundation by processing donations. Ram has a kind manner and a delightful sense of humour. He is a real asset to our volunteer team.

Thank you Ram for all you do for Calgary Public Library!

December 5th is International Volunteer Day

by Katie Radke - 0 Comment(s)

Thanks to each and every Calgary Public Library volunteer!

With volunteer support and commitment we are able to bring library materials to those unable to visit the library, computer literacy skills to young children and seniors alike, language support to new Canadians, career support to job seekers, literacy and numeracy skills to children and adults, and so much more.

Thank you volunteers, for your dedication to the Library and for improving the lives of your fellow Calgarians!

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