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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!

Meet a Library Mascot Volunteer

by Christine P - 0 Comment(s)

Before... ...And After, with Mayor Nenshi!

Ever wonder who is hiding underneath our Mascot, Curious the Chameleon?


Since Curious’ arrival, we’ve had a team of volunteers bring our mascot to Library and Community events all across the city. So it hasn’t just been one person, it’s been many wonderful volunteers willing to don the sometimes heavy and warm costume.

Chief among our volunteer team for Curious is Sherina. Sherina has been working with Curious since the very beginning, in fact she was the first volunteer to dress up as Curious at it’s debut during Saddletowne Library’s opening day in January 2012!

Staff and customers are always commenting about how much energy, fun, and enthusiasm she has for the character. She makes Curious come alive for Calgary's children and has made many a storytime and public event more lively through her charcterization.

“She was flexible, went with the flow, kept up high energy the whole time – playing with kids, getting the crowd excited, etc. She had a smile on her face the whole time and she really pulled the group together!”

Thank you, Sherina, for all that you put into your volunteer work!

If you are interested in volunteering as the Library’s Mascot or Mascot "Handler", click here for more information. Our Mascot Handlers support our Mascot, assisting them to meet and greet the public, looking after physical and safety needs and escorting them at all times.

Thank you to Library Volunteers

by Christine P - 0 Comment(s)

Congratulations to Calgary Public Library for winning the CCVO’s Innovation Awards

To learn more, please read this article by Charity Village about the awards.

Thank you to all the library volunteers who helped be part of our ‘Welcome to the Library DVD’!

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