Vibrant Communities In Focus
Image Credit: Tyler Brownbridge
[Walpole Island First Nation] Phynix: “Libraries are the lifeline to reading. And reading is the lifeline to the world. My own earliest memories include my first trip to the Central Library of Philadelphia where I received my first library card. It was my first round-trip ticket to everywhere! Needless to say, I love libraries and love to read to children in this most wonderful environment.” Children from the Bkejwanong Children’s Centre listen with eyes sparkling to Phynix, a beloved children’s performer, songwriter, composer and actor. They are gathered at the Walpole Island First Nation’s library as part of a summer reading program. Phynix’s interactive performance encourages the kids to offer their own ideas. He also brings in drums that he and the children play together. “The money we get from Trillium allows us to bring in really high-calibre performers, really cool people like Phynix. There’s no way we could afford that otherwise. We get performers to come to us, and the children soak it all up, without having to leave the community.” Librarian Summer Sands says her library offers reading programs, art classes, acting workshops and a resting place for the First Nation children. “They come here after school, to read or use our computers for homework. And it’s just a wonderful, safe place for them. We had an awesome attendance for our Open House last week. The adults are now learning through their kids that the library is a great part of the community.”