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Oakville Public Library launches OPL StoryWalks® with Government of Canada’s Healthy Communities Initiative grant

Oakville Public Library launches OPL StoryWalks® with Government of Canada’s Healthy Communities Initiative grant main image

OAKVILLE, ON – Oakville Public Library (OPL) is honoured to be the recipient of $48,536 in funding from the Government of Canada’s Health Communities Initiative led by the Golden Horseshoe Hub and Oakville Community Foundation. This funding will support the OPL StoryWalks® project.

OPL is excited to partner with the Town Of Oakville, in launching StoryWalks® at outdoor trails and locations across Oakville, providing Oakville residents of all ages with access to year round, self-guided walks with selected stories.

OPL's StoryWalks® will:

  • Foster community connectedness, encourage residents to get outdoors and spend time in nature, while utilizing trails, town parks and public spaces.

  • Benefit the Oakville community by promoting an interest in literacy, well-being, healthy living, connectedness and outdoor physical activity in a safe, socially distant way

  • Promote development of valuable skills in children including problem solving, self-regulation and engagement within natural surroundings. Chosen stories will reflect seasons, diverse cultural celebrations with a range of themes and characters aimed at social determinants of health guided by OPL and Town Of Oakville inclusion policies.
StoryWalks® locations have been thoughtfully chosen throughout Oakville based on public accessibility for the entire community.

The three StoryWalks® locations include:

  • Bronte Heritage Waterfront Park

  • Tannery and Waterworks Parks

  • George Savage Park


Public spaces are a big part of what makes communities vibrant and connected, and help to build a sense of belonging and social cohesion. As our communities each face increased isolation due to COVID-19, the OPL StoryWalks® project, thanks to Canada Healthy Communities Initiative, will help our community to connect safely and will benefit the mental and physical well-being of all our residents.

Wendy Rinella, CEO, Oakville Community Foundation

We are grateful to the Canada’s Healthy Communities Initiative for offering OPL the ability to respond to the unique needs our residents and create opportunities to combine both literacy and fitness in a fund and engaging way. Through this project, OPL provides residents and their families with ways to enjoy a safer, more vibrant, and inclusive community now and into the future. OPL StoryWalks® books will feature both diverse characters and multi - languages. We will continue to highlight books that are either written by diverse authors / illustrators or feature diverse characters to reflect the Oakville community.

Tara Wong, CEO, Oakville Public Library

There are two simple life elixirs that can aid any troubled day, a walk in the fresh air and discovering a new story. Whether one is in need of brightening a day, adding excitement to the mundane or recovering from a hardship, a story and a walk can help. Add in the building of a sense of community, the combination can be simply restorative. As part of the Canadian Healthy Communities Initiative, I am thrilled to support the bringing together of this community impact through funds to the Oakville Public Library StoryWalks® project.

Mira Backo-Shannon, Oakville Community Foundation Board and Golden Horseshoe Hub Review Committee member.

Quick facts

  • The Canada Healthy Communities Initiative was created to help communities adapt to the COVID-19 pandemic and create safe ways for residents to access services and enjoy the outdoors. The Initiative is designed to fund eligible projects between $5,000 and $250,000 that fall under three main themes: creating safe and vibrant public spaces, improving mobility options, and digital solutions.

  • Community Foundations of Canada together with its partners, including the Canadian Urban Institute, worked with community foundations across the country to manage the funding process and serve the distinct needs of communities across Canada, including equity-seeking groups.

  • A variety of community-led organizations were eligible to apply, including local governments, charities, Indigenous communities, and registered non-profit organizations.

  • OPL was inspired by the StoryWalks® concept created by Anne Ferguson and Rachel Senechal from Vermont’s Kellogg-Hubbard Library.

About Oakville Public Library

Oakville Public Library (OPL) strives to fulfill our mission of cultivating discovery and creativity in every phase of life. Our vision is to inspire Oakville, and we are focused on exceptional customer service to meet the needs of the children, youth, adults and seniors utilizing our physical or online services.

OPL focuses on library programming that creates a sense of belonging, enhances well- being, expression, early literacy and engagement in the community. We continue to be agile in our mandate to meet the needs of Oakville residents.

For more information follow OPL on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter (@oakvillelibrary).

Media Contacts 

Naveen Atwal
Manager, Integrated Marketing and Communications
Oakville Public Library
905-815-2042 ext.2031

Posted: August 12, 2021 12:08 PM