LGBTQ books promote education, awareness and kindness

For many companies, community involvement and support is part of their mandate. The pandemic restrictions imposed by COVID have reduced the opportunities where they can offer financial assistance to community initiatives and events, limited volunteer opportunities, or offer support to communities that patronize their businesses.

This is the case of Bruce Telecom. A former Pride parade supporter in Kincardine, Marketing Coordinator Kathryn Bruce contacted Pride President Fort Papalia to see how the telecommunications company could offer support.

“In the fall of 2021, I had contacted on behalf of Bruce Telecom at Fort Papalia of Kincardine Pride, to see if there were any opportunities to partner with any outreach initiative,” Bruce said. “Bruce Telecom is involved in many community groups and in previous years we have supported the Kincardine Pride group with their parades. With COVID being a game changer, we wanted to continue our support in another way and we didn’t know how. All we knew was that we wanted to show our support for the LGBTQ community and raise awareness.

Papalia and Bruce considered the possibility of creating a lending library, run by the Pride office, with Pride handling distribution and Bruce Telecom buying the books. Due to ongoing office closures, this idea was shelved, but as past collaborations with Kincardine Library had been very positive, they approached Kincardine Library Branch Senior Supervisor, Michaela Posthumus, with the initiative, and a partnership between the three organizations was formed.

“This donation allowed us to purchase even more inclusive picture books, recent adult, young adult, and children’s fiction, as well as non-fiction books on LGBTQ+ topics,” Posthumus said. “There are bestsellers and book club picks, coming-of-age stories, and fun, colorful reads for families. The Bruce County Public Library supports a diverse collection of books, films, and more that represent all members of our community. Whether you’re looking for information, entertainment, or want to see the world through someone else’s eyes, you’ll find it in these new additions to our library.

After the details were settled, Bruce Telecom offered $500 to fund the purchase of LGBTQ books to add to the library’s current collection. Posthumus has found some new writing and next June the Kincardine branch will feature the books during Pride Month.

“Kincardine Pride is delighted to accept a $500 donation from Bruce Telecom, to be used towards the purchase of books on LGBTQ+ topics and themes,” Papalia said. “These books will be curated and made available to the public through the Bruce County Library system to reach as wide a readership as possible. Thank you to our two community partners for working together on this initiative, in support of inclusivity and diversity in our communities across the region.

“Bruce Telecom is so grateful to be a part of the work the Kincardine Pride Group and the Kincardine Public Library are doing to help educate and spread kindness,” Bruce said.

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About Stuart M. McFarland

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