By Omar Mouallem
I never saw a librarian shush a talky patron. That too is an old cliché. But I have watched a librarian help a grandmother contact her grandkids on Facebook; organize a community group meeting; and borrow change from the staff coffee jar so that a down-on-his-luck man would have bus fare for a job interview.
One librarian I met at the Lois Hole branch even helped Nigerian immigrant bring his daughter to Canada because he struggled to understand the paperwork. She thought it was her duty to succeed where customs had failed him.
“There has always been an element of social work to my job,” she told me.
Seeing librarians at work, and this institutional evolution, has been fascinating and humbling, especially at the Stanley Milner branch. continue reading