An endeavor which offers bookworms a chance to earn extra school credits and valuable work experience is celebrating a milestone.
The Youth Advisory Council program is marking its fifth anniversary this year. It was originally launched in 2007 at the Millennium Library and has since grown to include the Sir William Stephenson Library on Keewatin Street and the St. James-Assiniboia Library on Portage Avenue.
The project teaches teens how to plan and run events, select books and furniture for their library’s teen rooms, and provide content and advice on website design for the YAC website referred to as Booked (www.wpl-teens.winnipeg.ca).
Patricia Terryl, a former member of the council, said it "got me out of my shell and meeting new people."
Jan, a current YAC participant, said it has provided her with some food for thought, both figuratively and literally.
"We shopped for new books, designed a website and made new friends — as if the snacks weren’t incentive enough," she said.
Youth meet intermittently throughout the year to review teen titles for the library and help with summer reading programs and library contests.
"YAC helped shape my identity. It was a place where I did what I loved and stood by our work," said Tripti, adding she learned that making a correct choice in life may not always be the popular one.
"(YAC) really helped me realize I should do the things I love no matter how ‘unpopular’ they may seem."
Millennium Library youth councils meet Saturdays with the next meeting slated for June 9.
Meetings at the St. James-Assiniboia Library take place every second Thursday, including the next one on May 10. Council meetings at Sir William Stephenson Library at 765 Keewatin St. are scheduled for Thursdays from 5 to 6 p.m. for May 10, May 31, June 14 and June 28.
For Sir William Stephenson Library YAC info, call 986-7096. For the St. James Library, call 986-3452. For the Millennium Library YAC information, call 986-6488 or email firstname.lastname@example.org