In this issue:
- Letter from CELA’s Executive Director
- Expanded Delivery Options Project Update
- CELA Celebrates Pride
- Awards updates
- Check out the CELA Blog
- Forest of Reading Winners announced
- Summer Reading Clubs
- Quick way to find new CELA titles
- Come see us at APLA
- Featured title for adults
- Top five books
- Featured title for kids
- Top five for kids
- Top five for teens
- Stay connected!
Letter from CELA’s Executive Director
Over the past few months CELA has been working on a strategic planning document to guide us for the next 2 years. As a result of this work, the CELA team has been having conversations internally and with selected stakeholder groups about what role we play for our users, libraries, and the broader accessibility landscape. Those conversations almost inevitably come back to some key concepts - choice, accessibility, and advocacy. We hope to share the final document out with our community next month.
It’s easy to see how these concepts shape our daily work even now. We are in the process of onboarding more than 50 libraries in Manitoba. We are preparing them to offer CELA services in support of their patrons with print disabilities. In early June, at the Atlantic Provinces Library Association conference, we will have the honour of presenting CELA’s Accessibility Award. Each year the award goes to a library that makes extra effort to implement creative, accessible programs and initiatives in their Summer Reading Club Program. We hope that by offering this award, we encourage libraries to consider accessibility in all their programming, and to share their innovative ideas with other libraries.
Rachel Breau will present the CELA Accessibility Award on Wednesday alongside the TDSRC Award presentation and share Ten Steps to an Amazing, Accessible, Summer Reading Club for Kids in her session on Thursday. Also on Thursday, I will be partnering with colleagues from NNELS and Halifax Public Library to discuss the Public Libraries Accessibility Resource Centre (PLARC) project. We’d love to see you at our sessions!
We are also just about to conclude the last portion of our Expanded Delivery Options Project, and we are so grateful for the feedback we have received from participants. Our goal with this project has always been to give patrons more flexibility by adding to the technology choices available to read our books. As we’ve learned more about how these options work for our users and with our systems, we are in a better place to offer these options more broadly and to support users as they explore new options in the future. We’ve learned a lot through this process and are looking forward to sharing more with our users over the coming months.
As we look towards the warmer weather this summer, we are busy adding new titles to our collection that will be perfect for your summer reading lists. Over the past year we’ve added more than 20,000 titles to our CELA collection, in addition to the great titles available in the always increasing Bookshare collection. If there is a book you would like to see added to our collection, I invite you to use our book suggestion form. While we can’t promise to add every suggestion, it is valuable for us to hear from our users about what they love to read.
CELA Executive Director
Expanded Delivery Options Project Update
We began our Expanded Delivery Options Project (EDOP) earlier this year with the goal of learning more about three new audiobook delivery options, how our patrons would use new technology options, and how CELA’s systems could adapt to support them. As the Pilot Project comes to an official close this month, we want to thank our participants for all their time and the very valuable input they offered. We also hope that they will continue to offer feedback as they gain more experience with the Envoy Connect, the voice assistant smart speaker option, and how these options interact with our system.
Over the summer, our CELA team will evaluate the feedback we have received and use it to help us plan for the future. Once our analysis of the feedback is complete, we will share more of the details with you.
We also want to thank our EDOP project team for their hard work over the last few months. They have offered excellent support to our participants and have developed new materials. They will leave us well positioned to plan for the future. We wish them all the best in their future endeavours.
In addition to sharing more about our plans, in a coming newsletter we will introduce you to the partners who have been instrumental in developing and supporting the systems that have supported our Pilot Project.
For more information about our Expanded Delivery Options Project, please visit our EDOP page.
CELA Celebrates Pride
In June, we celebrate Pride Month and it is the perfect time to read works about or by authors from the LGBTQ+ community. We've curated a list of new titles to check out. You can also go to our Browse by category page for more inspiring and amazing reads.
The LAMBDA Literary Awards are presented every year to the best LGBTQIA+ of the year. The 2022 finalists were recently announced, and include a number of notable Canadian writers. Winners will be announced on June 11.
- Care Of: Letters, Connections, and Cures by Ivan Coyote (Canadian writer)
- We Want What We Want by Alix Ohlin (Canadian writer)
- Northern Light by Kazim Ali (Canadian writer)
Congratulations to Joanna Chiu who won the 2022 Shaughnessey Cohen prize for Political Writing. Chiu, an award winning journalist, is the author of China Unbound: A New World Disorder, which delves into the growing impact of China’s influence on politics, economics and human rights around the world. Read China Unbound and the other nominees in our collection.
Toronto-based author Ashley Audrain won the Best Crime First Novel award for her debut novel, The Push, at the 2022 Crime Writers of Canada Awards. The Push tells the story of a young woman, new to motherhood, who is convinced that there is something wrong with her daughter. Other Canadian nominees included Cherie Dimaline for her YA novel Hunting by stars, Linwood Barclay for Find you first and Shari Lapena for Not a happy family.
Check out the CELA Blog
This month on the blog, we featured titles to celebrate both Asian Heritage Month and Jewish Heritage Month. We’ve selected authors and stories from our collection that reflect these two communities and the important contributions they make. We hope you will find some new favourites.
You can find our blog, and our recommended titles at celalibrary.ca/blog.
Forest of Reading Winners announced
Finally, after months of reading, the 2022 Forest of Reading winners are here! Canadian comedian Ali Hassan, best known as the host of CBC Radio One's weekly comedy program Laugh Out Loud, announced the nominees and winners over Zoom to excited kids across Canada. Check out the award winners available in accessible formats, or go to our dedicated Forest of Reading page for all of the nominated titles!
Summer Reading Clubs
CELA supports summer reading clubs across the country to help you make your programs accessible. Libraries participating in the TD Summer Reading Club should receive their package of materials from CELA shortly.
All libraries participating in the Club will receive accessible materials and outreach tools, including:
- two adapted pre-reader notebooks
- two adapted school-age notebooks
- one bilingual poster that says “Read, and take flight! The sky’s the limit! Read audio, e-books or braille!!”
These materials will be available in printed formats as well as in audio, braille, accessible PDF, and Open Dyslexic font online. Families can visit the TDSRC Accessibility page for more information or to download these resources.
We have lots of resources available to help you plan for an accessible summer reading club. Check out our handy tips sheet, which is great to share with staff, or visit the Plan for Accessibility page on the TD Summer Reading Club Staff site.
Quick way to find new CELA titles
We want to make it easy for libraries to find and promote accessible titles. Each month, we compile a printable, curated list of our new titles. These lists feature some of our most popular authors and genres, or highlight books with buzz.
Why not add this list to a blog or a newsletter article? You can circulate it to your staff to help promote accessible reading resources available in your library.
You can find the current list by visiting the Accessible Books section on our For Libraries page.
Come see us at APLA
CELA is presenting 2 sessions at the Atlantic Provinces Library Association Conference in June and we would love to see you.
Ten Steps to an Amazing, Accessible, Summer Reading Club for Kids!
Presented by Rachel Breau (CELA)
Learn how to make your children’s summer reading programs inclusive and welcoming for kids with disabilities. These 10 steps will guide you along your planning, program implementation, and evaluation journey to ensure every aspect is accessible. You will gain awareness of some of the challenges facing kids with disabilities who use the library both in person and virtually. You will also learn how to inspire staff to follow accessibility best practices, outreach tips to encourage more families with disabilities to participate, and how to feature your summer reading club materials and books in accessible reading formats. You can make your program shine this year by offering an amazing, accessible, summer reading club!
Accessibility in Public Libraries in Canada: Bridging the Gap
Presented by Laurie Davidson (CELA), Daniella Levy-Pinto (NNELS), and Cynthia Gatto (Halifax Public Library)
While public libraries in Canada strive to offer services to disadvantaged and marginalized populations, accessibility for readers with print disabilities is often not considered in the development and offering of the mainstream services of the library, and accessible content and systems are often only available in a separate service or repository. With support from the Canada Book Fund, NNELS (National Network for Equitable Library Service) and CELA (Centre for Equitable Library Access) are co-leading the Public Libraries Accessibility Resource Centre (PLARC) project, to engage with library staff to develop awareness and training in accessibility in all areas of the library, and to help ensure the availability, procurement and delivery of accessible books and resources across Canada. This panel discussion will include an overview of the PLARC project, a user perspective on accessibility within public libraries, and a library staff perspective on incorporating accessibility across all operations and services. This session will also provide an overview of the complicated landscape of accessibility, which will help librarians and library staff better serve their diversity of readers.
Featured title for adults: In the shadow of the mountain: A memoir of courage
Endless ice. Thin air. The threat of dropping into nothingness thousands of feet below. This is the climb Silvia Vasquez-Lavado braves in her page-turning, pulse-raising memoir following her journey to Mount Everest. A Latina hero in the elite macho tech world of Silicon Valley, privately, she was hanging by a thread. Deep in the throes of alcoholism, hiding her sexuality from her family, and repressing the abuse she'd suffered as a child, she started climbing.
Something about the brute force required for the ascent - the risk and spirit and sheer size of the mountains and death's close proximity - woke her up. She then took her biggest pain as a survivor to the biggest mountain: Everest. She gathered a group of young female survivors and led them to base camp alongside her. It was never easy. At times hair-raising, nerve-racking, and always challenging, Silvia remembers the acute anxiety of leading a group of novice climbers to Everest's base, all the while coping with her own nerves of summiting. In the Shadow of the Mountain is a remarkable story of heroism, one which awakens in all of us a lust for adventure, an appetite for risk, and faith in our own resilience.
Top five books
Most popular with our readers this month:
- Sea of tranquility: A novel by Emily St. John Mandel Science fiction
- Her Hidden Genius: A Novel by Marie Benedict Historical fiction
- Run Towards the Danger: Confrontations with a Body of Memory by Sarah Polley Actors biography
- Run, Rose, run: A novel by Dolly Parton Suspense and thrillers
- State of terror: A novel by Hillary Rodham Clinton, Louise Penny Suspense and thrillers
Featured title for kids: Meet David Suzuki
As a young boy, David Suzuki loved spending time in the glorious British Columbia outdoors with his father. The racist policies against Japanese Canadians during World War II put an abrupt end to that when David’s family was sent to a Japanese internment camp in 1942. After the war, the Suzuki family was forced to leave B.C., settling in Ontario. David immersed himself in learning, earning a PhD in zoology, becoming a professor, and eventually taking his love of science education into the public sphere with his shows on CBC radio and television. Climate change is one of the most important issues of our time, and David Suzuki has led the charge in education and activism in Canada for decades.
Top five for kids
Most popular with kids this month:
- Chirp by Kate Messner
- Anne of Avonlea: Anne of Green Gables series, book 2 (Anne of Green Gables) by L. M. Montgomery
- Because of Winn-Dixie (Because Of Winn-dixie Ser.) by Kate DiCamillo
- Shipwreck (Detective Murdoch mystery.) by Maureen Jennings
- Darkstalker (Wings of Fire: Legends book 1) by Tui T. Sutherland
Top five for teens
Most popular with teens this month:
- The red palace by June Hur
- Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (Aristotle and Dante) by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
- The inheritance games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
- The forest of stolen girls by June Hur
- Dancing After TEN by Vivian Chong
Are there topics related to accessibility that you would like to see included in our webinars? We regularly update our content and always appreciate hearing ideas from library staff. Send your suggestions to email@example.com.
An overview of CELA service, including collections offered, eligibility, how to order DAISY audio books or other alternative format books for your library, patron registration, and promotional ideas.
Frontline staff webinar
This webinar will provide an introduction to CELA services for your colleagues who need to understand the basics about your CELA service so they can direct patrons appropriately.
Educator Access Program webinar
This webinar will introduce the CELA Educator Access program which allows public libraries to offer educators at the elementary, secondary and post-secondary levels in their community access to CELA services on behalf of students with print disabilities. This webinar is for both educators and public library staff.