The Northern Libraries Conference held last week in Air Ronge didn’t pass without acknowledging those who have hit a milestone in their work.
“With a square-footage in our area of 268,500 kilometers, it’s very easy to feel alone and isolated out there,” Pahkisimon Nuyeʔáh Library System (PNLS) Director James Hope Howard said. “We always like to remind our library staff we’re all in this together and we’re working towards common goals.”
The two-day annual conference held Oct. 9 and 10 began with a series of professional development presentations on subjects like programming and online resources, before ending with a gala dinner where awards were handed out. Those honoured included Beauval’s Carol Buffin, who was recognized for 30 years of employment as a librarian at Valley View Community School, as well as Lisa Ulriksen, who was acknowledged for 10 years of work at the PNLS Headquarters in Air Ronge.
With roughly 60-member libraries on northern Saskatchewan, Howard noted it’s important to make sure staff feel appreciated. As a gift for all her work, Buffin was presented with some small stained-glass items to keep.
“Carol has always been good at her work and she’s been excellent to deal with,” Howard said. “It’s always nice to see her smiling face when we drop by Beauval to help out with something.”
Buffin began working at Valley View in 1988 and she said the way the library operates now is very different than how they did back then. She remembers using index cards to sign out books and added the library has made several system changes too. Not everything has changed, however, as Buffin noted they still try bring in the newest books to keep the public coming in.
“It was very rewarding,” Buffin said about being recognized at the gala. “It was nice to be acknowledged. I enjoy what I’m doing and I’ll be here for a while yet.”
The Valley View Community School library is also home to the village’s public library. Aside from regular working hours during the week, Buffin said it’s also open on weekends and evenings to provide services and programming to local residents.
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