Staff Stories: Kentron Beals – Craving Connection

Originally shared as part of Halifax Public Libraries' 2020-21 Annual Report

The community connections forged by Kentron Beals and the team at Halifax North Memorial Public Library were only strengthened through facing the challenges of COVID-19 together, apart. From friendly check-in phone calls, to physically distanced 'hugs' at Curbside Pick-up, to seeking out emergency funding for a family in need; the role of Community Navigator is one that Kentron Beals lives wholeheartedly, every day.

Community connections run deep at the Halifax North Branch, and a big part of this connection is thanks to Kentron and his care for community. The Community Navigator role serves as a bridge—helping share important news, connecting people to supportive resources and listening to community needs.

“Finding ways to support the community, while some resources were not available, was certainly a challenge,” says Kentron. Serving with compassion and creativity, helped Kentron overcome challenges and make meaningful connections with community members.

This past year, the Library had to get creative when it came to connecting with Library users. Whether it was communicating through social media, phone calls or the power of word of mouth, Kentron made sure the Library supported community members, no matter what that looked like.

Meeting people where they are looks different each day—some days it involved connecting people to emergency community resources, and other days it involved having conversations and listening to the struggles COVID-19 was causing the community. It’s all in a day’s work for Kentron and the team at Halifax North Branch.

"I know the Library is important to this community, and every community...because of how much they missed us when we were shut down. And then, when we reopened, we saw their reactions and how grateful they were for the services." 

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