Library in Spryfield Wins National Award

Press Release - July 4, 2012
Halifax, NS – The Captain William Spry Public Library, a branch of Halifax Public Libraries, has won a TD Summer Reading Club Library Award for 2011. The library will be awarded $5,000 to be invested in the branch.

The TD Summer Reading Club Library Awards, sponsored by the TD Bank Group and coordinated by Library and Archives Canada, recognize the most innovative and effective TD Summer Reading Club programs in local public libraries across Canada. The Captain William Spry Public Library’s youth services librarian Ella Leving accepted the award at the Canada Library Association national conference in Ottawa, May 30-June 2.

The Captain William Spry Public Library’s summer initiatives included an art camp program, programs delivered in the Greystone community in partnership with Family SOS’s Healthy Kidz program and programs delivered in community schools by the library’s youth services team to promote participation in the TD Summer Reading Club.

“The youth services team at the Captain William Spry Public Library uses a variety of creative techniques to promote the TD Summer Reading Club. We are known in the community for our high-energy presentations that employ drama, humour and interactive elements to engage children. Delivered in a lively, energetic way, our message resonates with kids. We show that reading and libraries are fun, and we get kids excited about getting involved,” said youth services librarian Ella Leving.

The selection committee is comprised of a nationally recognized panel of at least three judges, chosen from the fields of children’s literature and librarianship, literacy or education. “I believe in blending literacy themed programming with fun and excitement. I’m thrilled that our approach to programming has been recognized nationally. The award money will go to good use in our branch,” said Ella.

For more information about the TD Summer Reading Club, visit td-club-td.ca/index-e.html

For more information about Halifax Public Libraries, visit halifaxpubliclibraries.ca

Halifax Public Libraries Wins American Library Association’s Most Prestigious Award Second Year Running

Press Release - January 19, 2004
Halifax Public Libraries is pleased to announce that it has once again won the American Library Association’s prestigious John Cotton Dana Library Public Relations Award. The Library (this year, the only Canadian winner) received the award, which honours “outstanding achievement in library public relations for a particular program, celebration or campaign”, for its promotion of 2003's Summer Reading Program, entitled “Summer Reading Quest”. The Library also won the award in 2003, for promotion of its 2002 Summer Reading Program.

This year’s program, based on a fantasy theme, was, as described by the awards committee, a “complex and layered “Summer Reading Quest” featuring seven fantasy characters in an original, interactive adventure and a dynamic Web site designed to attract the reluctant reader.”

During the award announcements, award committee chair, Peter Deekle, acknowledged the level of commitment necessary to delivering an award-winning program. "The quality of the applications received this year represented the full spectrum of library public relations activities, and, without exception, the entrants deserve praise for their commitment of time and effort in their individual public relations operations and the resulting entries.”

The Summer Reading Program, which last year celebrated 21 years of promoting children reading over the summer, is always a popular program. And this past year was no exception - in fact being the most popular to date - with approximately 6,500 kids reading over 80,000 books; up almost 20 per cent over 2002. This substantial increase was seen as a result of the program’s appeal to older children.

Library Board Chair, Peter Doig, noted that “The impressive numbers of participants and books read clearly reflects the effectiveness of the program, as well as the idea that the Library system is reaching more and more children every year. Receiving this much-coveted award also confirms that we’re also delivering a quality product, and helping to build a strong community.”

With the goal of ensuring balanced participation among communities served, especially at inner city libraries, the Library, as part of its 2003 public relations campaign, aimed its fantasy story at attracting children who might not have been involved in other years. Considerable effort was placed on securing partnerships with community organizations (including a pilot project where relationships were forged with local community groups such as local Boys and Girls Clubs and the YMCA); reaching schools with previously low participation; providing kids with a more interactive program; creating a dynamic website presence; and creatively and consistently used an identifiable theme and recognizable graphics throughout the program.

The award, sponsored by American publisher, H.W. Wilson and the Library Administration and Management Association, is named for American librarian John Cotton Dana (1856-1929), and given to libraries which distinguish themselves through effective public relations campaigns. Dana, a key figure in what is termed a “Progressive Era” in American history, believed that libraries could and should play a leading role in realizing the democratic culture and egalitarian society.

The John Cotton Dana is Halifax Public Libraries second award received over the last year. The Library also won the LibraryNet “Best Practices” for innovative Internet use in Canadian Public Libraries. The Summer Reading Program is generously sponsored by Imperial Oil.

Halifax Public Libraries Wins Industry Canada Award

Press Release - October 15, 2003
The Library is pleased to announce that it has recently won Industry Canada’s LibraryNet “Best Practices” 2003 award. Through this award, Industry Canada works to recognize leaders in the public library sector through their innovative public library projects - evaluated and based on the following criteria: Innovation, Community Engagement, Community Enhancement, Improved Service, User Friendliness and Transferability.

This year, Halifax Public Libraries won under the heading of “Community Enhancement” for its IT Skills Project, whereby the Library developed an array of pre-packaged programs to meet customer demand for courses on IT-related topics. These "kits" allowed and continue to allow staff in each of the Library's 14 branches to present any one of nine IT skills programs to their community.

The LibraryNet Best Practices Awards were created in 1997 to encourage public libraries to share information, and learn from each other about how they can use their technology and know-how to better serve their communities.

Keshen Goodman Library Wins Lieutenant Governor’s Design Award in Architecture

Press Release - April 23, 2002
The Halifax Regional Library is pleased to announce that its flagship branch - the recently opened Keshen Goodman Library - has been chosen as a winning design to receive one of five Lieutenant Governor’s Design Awards in Architecture.

The architecture firms responsible for the library’s design - Urbana Architects Corporation in association with MacFawn & Rogers Architects Ltd. - will receive an Award of Merit for what the jury described as “Well sited, a clear organization strongly expressed, an architectural concept rigorously detailed, resulting in bright, delightful spaces, an elegant and sophisticatedly detailed solution.”

The winning designs will be on display at Halifax’s Mary E. Black Gallery from April 26 - June 1. The actual awards ceremony will take place at Government House at a later date.

The Keshen Goodman Public Library was built through a bequest left to the Halifax Regional Library by Marion Keshen in honour of the Keshen Goodman family. The 25,000 square foot branch provides increased access to technology with public access computers, a family computer area, and a computer training lab. It also offers two spacious meeting rooms (available for public use), self-check and self pick-up holds, spacious children’s and adult reading areas, as well as a cozy café.