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Library Settlement Partnerships (LSP) Updates and Summer Settlement Services

June 25, 2015 | Patty | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

  LSP logo
The Library Settlement Partnership (LSP) program is now in its 8th year at the Toronto Public Library and is a valuable resource for newcomers to Canada. 

LSP Settlement Worker

Funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and partnering with eight Settlement Agencies, the LSP program helps newcomers settle in Toronto by offering free, direct access to settlement workers and programs in selected libraries across the city.

Toronto Public Library currently has 14 LSP locations year round. 





Fairview  (as of July 22)

Flemingdon Park

Lillian H. Smith




Parliament Street



Toronto Reference Library

York Woods

More information about the LSP program can be found on the Settling in Toronto page and on the New to Canada Blog.

LSP Settlement Worker

The LSP Settlement Agency Partners are:

Catholic Crosscultural Services

Centre for Immigrant and Community Services


Kababayan Community Centre

North York Community House

Rexdale Women's Centre

Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office

YMCA Newcomer Information Centre





During the summer, settlement workers are available at additional Toronto Public Library locations, through the Settlement and Education Partnerships in Toronto (SEPT) program.  This summer, there are 16 locations offering the SEPT program:

Barbara Frum

Black Creek

Burrows Hall


Deer Park



Goldhawk Park


Humber Summit


Maria A. Shchuka

McGregor Park

North York Central Library





There will be over 30 library locations offering settlement services to newcomers this summer.



The Top 10 Free Things To Do In Canada This Summer

June 19, 2015 | Maria | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Are you new to Canada? Are you unsure of how to spend your summer? Well, you're in luck! I've put together this list of the top 10 things to do in Canada this summer. They're fun and, best of all, they're free!

1. Enjoy the Pan Am Games

The Pan Am Games are the third largest international multi-sport games. The games happen at a different city every four years, and in 2015 they're coming to Toronto! They'll start off with the Pan Am Games (July 10, 2015 - July 26, 2015) followed by the Parapan Am Games (August 7, 2015 - August 15, 2015).

There will be tons of free events all over the city. You can also come celebrate at the library with free Pan Am Games themed events for adults, children and teens.

2. Visit Popular Arts and Cultural Attractions

MAP Pass

Art Gallery of Ontario    Royal Ontario Museum

     Ontario Science Centre   City of Toronto Historic Sites   Black Creek Pioneer Village

Museum of Inuit Art    Gardiner Museum    Toronto Zoo

Another great way to spend the summer is to go to museums, art galleries, and other popular local attractions. You can visit them free by checking out a Toronto Public Library's Museum + Arts Pass with your library card from a participating branch.

3. Plan a Camping Vacation

Planning a Camping Vacation

   Kids gone campin'  The pocket guide to camping

  The essential family camper   Camping in comfort

Camping is a fun and inexpensive way for newcomers to learn about Canada and explore the Canadian wilderness. If you've never been camping before, Albert Campbell Branch has a free workshop, Planning a Camping Vacation on Thursday, June 25th from 6:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. You'll learn everything you need to know, from packing checklists to tips for life at the campsite.

4. Go to the Movies

In many Canadian cities—like Toronto—you can expect some extremely hot and sunny summer days. A great way to cool down is to head indoors and enjoy an afternoon at the movies. Movie theaters charge admission, but many Toronto Public Library branches have free movies for kids, families, adults, and seniors. To find out more, contact the library or stop by your local branch.

5. Check out a Digital Innovation Hub

In Branch Equipment    3D Printer     Digital Design Workstations

Digital Innovation Hubs are a ton of fun!  They have 3D printers, video and photography equipment, audio and music equipment, Arduinos, Raspberry Pis, and much more.

The Toronto Public Library has three Digital Innovation Hubs at the: Toronto Reference Library, Fort York Branch and Scarborough Civic Centre Branch. You can drop by during library hours, register for some free programs and classes, or use branch equipment to work on various projects. 

6.  Take a Computer Class

Computer Class at Agincourt Branch
Computer Class at Agincourt Branch

Did you know that there are free computer classes for beginners? If you have a friend or relative who has never used a computer before, they can learn some Basic Computer Skills at the library. You can take a look at the complete list of computer and library training or pick the closest library branch from the drop-down list to see what they're offering. Classes include Email and Social NetworkingDigital DesignInternet and Library ResearchDownloads and eBooks, and Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

7. Read a Book, or Two, or Twelve

Whether you're lounging on the beach or curled up on the couch, reading is a wonderful way to spend the summer. If you borrow books from the library, it also won't cost you a cent. Just get your free library card and pick up some books at your local branch. Best of all, you can find material in your language

8. Join the Summer Reading Club

Summer Reading Club Logo

Reading is a great way for kids to spend the summer! You can get them reading this summer by joining the TD Summer Reading Club: a fun, free program for kids of all ages. Sign up at any library branch and receive your free kit, which includes a notebook and access code. You can use it to keep track of your child's reading. Plus, kids who come to the library and tell us about the books they've read earn free stickers!

Summer Reading Club Kit

9. Listen to Stories

Dial-a-Story boy

Help your little ones fall asleep on a hot summer night with Dial-a-Story.

You can dial 416-395-5400 any time and listen to stories in 16 different languages:

  • English
  • French
  • Cantonese
  • Gujarati
  • Italian
  • Korean
  • Mandarin
  • Persian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Somali
  • Spanish
  • Tamil
  • Tagalog
  • Urdu

Or visit the Hear-a-Story website and listen to free stories online. There are 11 different languages to choose from:

  • English
  • French
  • Italian
  • Korean
  • Mandarin
  • Persian
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Tagalog
  • Urdu

10. Volunteer

Toronto Reference Library Cyber Seniors teen volunteers
Teen Volunteers at the Toronto Reference Library

Volunteering is a very rewarding experience and a great way to help your community this summer. If you'd like to volunteer at the library, we have many volunteer opportunities for adults and teens that you can be a part of. 

Another reason to love the Library - Italiano Collections at your doorstep!

June 5, 2015 | Chantel | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

You may have noticed the list of "100 Reasons to Check out the TPL" on our website. But if you haven’t, take a look and see what TPL has to offer, especially reason 63! Did you know that we offer materials in over 40 languages? That’s like having the Italian collection right at your doorstep – literally! There are 16 branches that house Italian materials with Downsview, Dufferin/St.Clair and the Toronto Reference Library with the largest collections. You can visit any of these branches and borrow your favourite movie, music, book or magazine!

Books and movies for adults
Elena Ferrant-Lamica geniale Il mio giardino semplice Tradizione and Vapore Stefano Benni-Margherita DolceVita

La sconosciuta Luomo che verra Young Montalbano Corpo Celeste

If you prefer reading on the go, you can check out OverDrive to download eBooks. Or perhaps you want to catch up on the latest entertainment news – check out Zinio for some great magazines on entertainment, health and travel.

Zinio eMagazines

Vanity Fair Italia Gente Focus Italia Geo Italia

Books for Children

Il ballo delle piume Che cosa ci vuole La Grande Invenzione Di Bubal La Gallinetta Rossa e i grani di frumento

Dial-a-storyCheck out the Dial-A-Story service where young children can listen to a story in Italian over a phone. Just dial 416-395-5400 anytime to listen to a story in 16 different languages.


Of course, let’s not forgot that the June is celebrate Italian Heritage Month. Our Downsview, Amesbury Park, Dufferin/St. Clair and Jones branches will be hosting a variety of programs including a live musical performance by Tino@Vivo, storytime in Italian for children and pizza dough making! You can also check out Little Italy at College Street for their annual "Taste of Little Italy" Festival!

With so many options, make sure to check out the Library for materials in your language!

Save the Date - First Annual Toronto Newcomer Day!

May 15, 2015 | Elsa | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Have you heard? Toronto Public Library is working with Toronto Newcomer Office for the city’s first annual Newcomer Day. It will take place on May 29 at Nathan Phillips Square from 11:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. 

Toronto Newcomer DayToten Teresa 5x7 copy

On Newcomer Day, activities will include: a formal presentation on the stage at Nathan Phillips Square to celebrate the City of Toronto’s signing of the Integrating Cities Charter, an interactive Newcomer Fair, "Speakers Corner", self-guided tours of City Hall, a visit by award-winning author Teresa Toten, Toronto Public Library information sessions, and much more. Don’t miss the first Newcomer Day!

City Hall branch is nearby. If you don't already have a library card, be sure to get one on Newcomer Day! 

Library Card

LSP- Library Settlement Partnerships



Toronto Public Library also offers a variety of resources for newcomers.  The  Library Settlement Partnerships (LSP) is offered at several library branches where a settlement worker can help newcomers with their settlement needs. This is a program funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada

 See you on Newcomer Day!

The Caribbean Connection to Asian Heritage

May 7, 2015 | Rachelle Gooden | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

When one thinks of the Caribbean, people of Chinese or Indian descent may not immediately come to mind, yet the Caribbean is home to these cultural groups and so many others. Chinese Jamaicans, Indo-Caribbean, Indo-Trinidadians, Caribbean-Chinese are some of the terms that are used to refer to Caribbean nationals of east or south Asian ancestry. These cultural groups have had a presence in the Caribbean since the mid-1800s. Their influence can be seen in the food, language, music and literature of these bonnie islands. If you have ever eaten a roti, doubles or pepper shrimp or listened to chutney music, then you will know exactly what I am talking about! This Asian Heritage Month, why not check out some Indo-Caribbean classics by V.S. Naipaul or Neil Bissondath? Or, perhaps you would like to enjoy one of these interesting Asian-Caribbean films.

Chinee Girl

Chinee Girl

People of Chinese descent have made a significant contribution to the cultural and economic life of Trinidad and Tobago (TNT). Yet the voices of women are notably absent from the story of the Chinese in TNT. In this film, 12 women from all walks of life tell an interwoven tale, creating a compelling contemporary portrait of the Caribbean-Chinese woman.











Half: The Story of a Chinese-Jamaican Son

Half: the story of a Chinese-Jamaican son

Caught between two cultures and races -- Vincent Lee was born to a Chinese father and a Jamaican mother. After his father's pre-mature death, five-year-old Vincent sailed across the ocean to southern China where he endured a life of hardship and servitude. In this compelling documentary Half reflects the complex, yet common practice of sending mixed race sons to China for acculturation in the 1930s. It reveals one man's universal search for family, identity, and belonging.

   Doubles with Slight Pepper

Doubles with slight pepper

Set in Trinidad during Christmas, this dramatic film is a coming of age story centred around, Dhani, a young street food vendor, who must decide if he will help save his estranged father from dying.










 Jeanette Kong

Better yet, come meet filmmaker, Jeanette Kong as she gives an overview of the Hakka Chinese migration from China to Jamaica and then to Canada.

Thursday, May 14, 2015, 7-8 p.m. at the Bloor/Gladstone Branch.

Korean Collections at Toronto Public Library

April 28, 2015 | Iana | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Once a month on this blog we feature a language collection and today we would like to present to you the great free Korean collections that Toronto Public Library offers - borrow thousands of Korean books for adults and children, magazines, DVDs, music CDs (including Kpop!), as well as language-learning materials to study Korean. 

There are four Toronto libraries with large Korean collections and six more branches with smaller collections in Korean. Visit Cedarbrae, North York Central Library, Palmerston and Toronto Reference Library for our largest Korean collections.

Korean materials at Palmerston LibrarySamples from the Korean collection - Palmerston Branch.

Getting a Free Library Card

To borrow materials from the library, all you need to do is sign up for your free library card. Find out how easy it is to get a library card. Here are instructions on how to get a library card in Korean. With your card, you can visit any of our 99 branches, among which are the 10 branches that have Korean collections

In addition to borrowing materials, there are other great ways to experience the library. Check out this video in Korean to find out more about getting a library card, the TD Summer Reading Club and storytimes at the library.



Toronto's Koreatown

If you ever visit Palmerston branch, one of the large Korean collection locations of Toronto Public Library, be sure to go outside and explore Koreatown or Little Korea. This small stretch along Bloor, between Markham and Christie Streets offers a great mix of affordable Korean eateries and restaurants. Here are some suggested Korean restaurants in Toronto, complied by BlogTO.

Toronto has the largest single concentration of Koreans in Canada and each year at the beginning of June, Koreatown presents the Korean Dano Spring Festival at Christie Pits Park (Christie subway @ 750 Bloor Str. W.), where visitors can enjoy Korean food, traditional dance and music, Korean Pop, arts and crafts, Taekwondo demonstrations, sports competitions etc. It is the largest Korean community event in Canada!

Each year Koreatown presents the Dano Festival, where visitors can witness spectacular martial arts demonstrations, exotic dancing and music. - See more at:


Learning Korean

And if you would like to begin learning Korean - the library is the right place! We have Mango Languagesdictionaries, books and CDs to help you learn Korean. Mango Languages is another great way to learn and practice Korean (and many other languages). Mango Languages Learning online courses are free to use with a Toronto Public Library card.


How about Korean stories for children?

 Dial-A-StoryIn addition to many books and DVDs, Dial-a-Story is a great resource for children to listen to recorded stories in Korean by phone (and 15 other languages!). There are stories for younger children (7 and under) and for older children (up to 12). You can listen anytime by dialing 416-395-5400 - the free Dial-a-Story library number.



Interested in more languages collections?

Check out our other blog posts highlighting multilingual collections at Toronto Public Library:



Tamil at Your Library | உங்கள் நூலகத்தில் தமிழ்

April 17, 2015 | Suzanne | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Tamil DVDs at Cedarbrae Branch

Do you want to read books in Tamil? Maybe watch a Tamil movie? Or learn Tamil? Well you've come to the right place! Welcome to Tamil at your library! நூலகம் வரவேற்கிறது! The Toronto Public Library (டொராண்டோ பொது நூலகம்) has thousands of Tamil books, DVDs, CDs, newspapers and more. There are six branches with large Tamil collections, and many other branches that carry Tamil.  Visit Albion, Cedarbrae, Fairview, Malvern, Toronto Reference Library and Woodside Square for our largest Tamil collections.  

Today I am visiting the Cedarbrae branch, where they have a wide selection of Adult and Children's materials in Tamil. There are even dual language books in Tamil and English, such as this picture book by Debbie Harter called Walking Through the Jungle.

Walking Through The Jungle     Inside page of Walking Through The Jungle
Dual language books are a great way for children to be able to experience a story in both languages. This title is available in eight different languages at the Toronto Public Library.

Getting a Card, Tamil Collections, Programs and More...

To borrow materials from the library, all you need to do is sign up for your free library card. Find out how easy it is to get a library card. Here are instructions on how to get a Library Card in Tamil. With your card, you can visit any of our 99 branches, with 24 branches that carry Tamil collections.

Library Branches with Tamil:

Large: 1500 or more items

Medium: 750-1500 items

Small: Fewer than 750 items

  • Albion
  • Cedarbrae
  • Fairview
  • Malvern
  • Toronto Reference Library
  • Woodside Square
  • Agincourt
  • Albert Campbell
  • Bridlewood
  • Burrows Hall
  • Downsview
  • Flemingdon Park
  • Goldhawk Park
  • McGregor Park
  • Morningside
  • Parkdale
  • Parliament Street
  • St. James Town
  • Bendale
  • Dawes Road
  • Eglinton Square
  • Kennedy/Eglinton
  • Maryvale
  • York Woods

In addition to borrowing materials, there are other great ways to experience the library. Check out this video to find out more about getting a library card, the TD Summer Reading Club and storytimes at the library.

If you are a newcomer, there are many ways the the library can help you.

LSPDid you know that the Toronto Public Library has Library Settlement Workers at branches throughout the city? Here is some information on the Toronto Public Library's Newcomer Services for Tamil Speakers.These staff can provide assistance on a variety of services for newcomers to Toronto such as citizenship, job searching, immigration, childcare and much more. 

This library user, named Vidhu, found help through a Settlement Worker when she first moved to Toronto. You can watch Vidhu's story here:


Support groupSome branches have programs especially for Tamil speakers. Did you know the York Woods branch has a Tamil Networking and Support Group?  Share your thoughts and experiences and get information from the Library Settlement worker Dilani Kronemberg. To register contact Dilani at 647-296-7358. This program is in partnership with Citizenship & Immigration Canada, North York Community House and Toronto Public Library.

The Toronto Public Library also offers free access to many Tamil language newspapers in print and digitally.  Find international news from sites like BBC News – South Asia, and local papers from Tamil Nadu (South India) and Sri Lanka.

Here are some exciting new titles available through our digital collections, Overdrive and Hoopla

A Peck On The Cheek    Amarar Kalkiyin Ponniyin Selvan Audio Book By Sri     Dr U Ve Sa - En Sarithiram Audio Book by Sri    Tamil Classics

Not a Tamil speaker but want to learn? The library can help you here as well! We have Mango Languagesdictionariesbooks and CDs to help you learn Tamil. Mango Languages is another great way to learn & practice Tamil.  It is also helpful for new English speakers as well.

Dial-A-StoryHow about Tamil stories for children? In addition to many books and DVDs, Dial-a-Story is a great resource for children to listen to stories in Tamil. There are stories for younger children (7 and under) and for older children (up to 12). You can listen anytime by calling (416) 395-5400. தமிழ் மொழியில் ஒரு நல்ல கதை கேட்க இந்த எண் (416) 395-5400 டயல்.


Finally, if you can't find what you're looking for – just ask! Our friendly staff are ready to help you find what you need. 

Welcome to your library!  நூலகம் வரவேற்கிறது!

Celebrate Opre Roma Festival – April 7th to April 12th

April 2, 2015 | Chantel | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Opre Roma - Rise Up RomaJoin Toronto Public Library as we partner with the Roma Community Centre at the Opre Roma – Rise up Roma Festival in this week-long celebration featuring Romani arts, musical performances by the Robi Botos Trio and meeting with well-known author Hedina Sijercic.

The Library will also be hosting storytelling programs for families at three branches: Taylor Memorial, Agincourt and Parkdale. There will be book displays at all the programs, including the main event held at the Lula Lounge on Sunday April 12th. Drop by and see what we have!

Get ready for the festival by checking out some of the music and books we have at the Library!

Don't forgot to check out Facebook for more information!


  Rromane paramicha Karankochi-Kochi  An Unusual Family

Robi Botos Trio  Best of 2000 Gypsy folk groups from Hungary  Gypsyland: The Greatest Songs Ever

Your Library in Russian | Русская коллекция в нашей библиотеке

March 18, 2015 | Maria | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

The Toronto Public Library (Публичная Библиотека Торонто) has a lot of great Russian books, movies, music, and more. 

To borrow library materials, you need to get a library card. It's free!

New to Canada? Join the library! It's free.

НЕДАВНО В КАНАДЕ? Запишитесь в библиотеку (PDF). Это бесплатно! 

The following Toronto Public Library locations have Russian materials:

Large: 1500 or more items Medium: 750-1500 items
  • Barbara Frum
  • Centennial
  • Humber Bay
  • Maria A. Shchuka
  • North York Central Library
  • Runnymede
  • Toronto Reference Library
  • Fairview
  • Flemingdon Park
  • Mimico Centennial
  • Richview
  • St. James Town

You can also view a map of Russian locations.

I've put together a list of new and popular Russian materials that you can borrow from the library:

For Adults | Для взрослых

Books | Книги

Исчезнувшая Легкое дыхание лжи Запечатленный ангел Самоволка

Выживатель Слишком много счастья Веер Настоящая фантастика 2014 

eBooks| Электронные книги

If you've new to eBooks, we have some great guides to help you get started. 

Знойная женщина – мечта буржуя Мастер и Маргарита  Сестры Снежная королева

Magazines | Журналы

Огонёк Караван историй Новый Мир Лиза

Movies | Фильмы

Горько! Главное не нажраться Бумер Дед 005 Долгая счастливая жизнь

Богиня Как я полюбила Место встречи изменить нельзя Чеховские мотивы Прогулка

eMovies | Фильмы онлайн

Did you know that the library has some online movies in Russian that you can watch on your computer, for free? All you need is to make a free account on the Hoopla website with your library card.

Black Lightning Love Me Jules Verne A Lifelong Journey Leonardo Seeking the Truth

Free Energy of Tesla Archimedes The Master of Numbers

While these movie titles are in English, the movies are all in Russian. Some have English subtitles.

For Kids| Для детей

Movies | Фильмы

приключения капитана Врунгеля Варвара-краса, длинная коса Тайна Заборского омута. Тайна Голубой долины  Остров сокровищ

Books | Книги 

Школа принцесс пираты твоя первая энциклопедия Дед рассказывает сказки История России в рассказах для детей

New Music | Новая Музыка

Любимой доченьке  Любимому сыночку  Лучшие песни для детей  Зажигательный детский хит

Hear a story

Hear a Story

Hear-a-Story lets kids listen to Russian stories online for free. Stories include: Теремок (The little tower), Волшебная водица (The magic potion), Ивашко и ведьма (Ivashko and the Witch), & Волк и коза (The Wolf and the Goat). 



Dial-a-story-boyYou can also listen to Russian stories any time by calling Dial-a-Story at 416-395-5400. Stories are for children 12 years of age and younger. 



Library Catalogue

You can use the Toronto Public Library catalogue advanced search to find more library materials in Russian. Don't forget to select "Russian" from the "Language:" category before hitting search. If you're looking for something specific, you can also select: library branch, publication year, and age level. 

Here are search results showing all Russian materials in the catalogue, sorted by date.


I hope you've enjoyed this brief overview of the Toronto Public Library's Russian collection. Let me know if you have any questions or comments and please share your favorite Russian books, movies, music or other library material below.

After School Youth Hubs

March 4, 2015 | Elsa | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

The After School Newcomer Hub is now called Youth Hubs. The Centennial Youth Hub and the Sanderson Youth Hub welcome newcomer teens (all teens as well) in grades 7-10 for free homework help and a place to hang out with friends after school.

Both Hubs run 3 times a week with trained volunteer tutors on site to help with homework and just to chat about school and settlement. Teens can use laptops for homework and research. For more information or for the March Break schedule, contact the coordinators at:

Getting homework help from trained tutors.

Teens can use laptops for homework and research. 

When homework is done, teens can play video games and check out free workshops.

Free workshop Fun video gaming

For more homework help needs, also check out the Homework Help for Teens.

Don’t forget about the free online databases for newcomer youth. Sign in with your library card and try TenseBuster, a database that offers lessons and practice tests to learn English grammar. It can also keep track of progress with test scores.

  Tense Buster

Welcome! This blog is written by librarians and provides information and resources available from the library and around Toronto to new residents of Canada. For more information see the Library's Help for Newcomers website