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April 2013

Immigrant Diversity Week: Our Strength, Our Celebration!

April 26, 2013 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Diversity - from Forbes.comImmigrant Diversity Week (IDW) begins this Monday, April 29th with events across the east end right up to May 3.

These events, organized by the Toronto East Quadrant Local Immigration Partnership, include a number of different speakers, activities and sponsor organizations from around the city. The aim of this week is to highlight the many ways Toronto (and particularly the east end) is strengthened by our diverse immigrant communities: in cultural events, politics, business and more.

Begin the week with the kick-off ceremony right here at the Cedarbrae Branch on April 29 at 10 AM. Join speaker Nicholas Keung, Immigrant and Diversity news reporter for the Toronto Star, as we look at the importance of IDW and how we can all be participants. Children's activities will also be available, so be sure to drop by!

The following day, on Tuesday April 30 at 3 PM, we will have guest speakers from Centennial College's Centre for Entrepreneurship in the branch to discuss the benefits of self-employment. This program is designed for all those interested in starting a business and is a great venue to ask questions and find support. Please call Cedarbrae's settlement counsellor, Houri Sahba, to register and find out more: 647-338-6300.

To round off the week, we'll be having a brown-bag luncheon at 12:30 PM on Thursday, May 2 to bring together community service providers, newcomers and other interested participants.Bring a lunch, settle in and get more information about what is available to you in your community!

There are a number of other events going on at Scarborough library branches all week, so be sure to check out the calendar of events.

While you're between events, why not pick up a book to read? There are so many rich aspects of the immigrant experience. Many of these, including the struggle with new languages, understanding a new culture, and finding the balance between one's native customs and adopted ones, are often beautifully illustrated in fiction. Check out some great reads I read and loved!

Girlintranslation Acrossahundredmountains Littlebee Thenamesake 

Girl in Translation by Jean Kwok
Kimberley Chang, a young Chinese girl, and her mother face the struggles of sweat-shop squalor in Brooklyn as they build a life they can both be proud of. I read this book in a day -- it's a quick, emotional read that will leave you really feeling for Kim and the double-life she is forced to live.

Across a Hundred Mountains by Reyna Grande
Juana Garcia leaves her small Mexican town to track down her father, who left years before to find a better life in America. Her journey will lead her to Adelina Vasquez, who left California to find her lover in Mexico. These two women will find themselves connected in the most trying times of their lives.

Little Bee by Chris Cleave
When Little Bee, a teenage Nigerian girl, crosses paths with Sarah Summers, a British magazine editor on vacation, neither one expects to see the other again following their brief time together. But years later, their paths will meet again - and Sarah may find that in helping Little Bee, she is helping herself too.

The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
Gogol has more than just a strange name - he has a life built on balancing his family's traditions and finding his own identity. Through heartbreak, some comic relief, and unearthing a tragedy that has defined his parents' lives, he will come to define his own. This book also became a movie (it's worth a watch too!)

If you've read all these, maybe you can try some others:

Ten Thousand Lovers by Edeet Ravel
The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
A Map of Home by Randa Jarrar
The Pleasure Seekers by Tishani Doshi

 Have a title about the immigrant experience that you loved? Please share it in the comments! Have questions about Immigrant Diversity Week events? Call the branch or come see us!


Feeling Wired?

April 8, 2013 | Soheli | Comments (0)

Chances are, if you're a teen reading this, you're probably already pretty comfortable with the online world: you tweet, you facebook, you Instagram...

Tweet anyone out there?But maybe you're getting bored. Maybe you're logging into your Facebook account and staring at the screen thinking: this used to be more fun. You're not alone.

In the spirit of this month's Keep Toronto Reading campaign, we're asking you:



How are you taking control of your media?


 Sure, we can post cute selfies and keep tabs on how many retweets we just got maybe there's more out there.

On Saturday, April 13th, at 2 PM, we are going to have coordinator, Jai Sahak, come in and help us explore different things we can do with our media.

Maybe you've got a passion for green living, or are finding yourself more aware of social justice issues. Maybe you're just wondering what else we've got to talk about. Wherever you stand, there's probably something you might want to think about -- and you've probably got something to share with others too.

Give us a call at 416-396-8850 or walk in and see us about registering for this session. If you've got a smartphone or tablet on you, even better; bring it with you when you join us!

For full program details, check out our listing here.

Hope to see you all there!


V is for...

April 2, 2013 | Erin | Comments (2)


Welcome to April, month of the eighth annual Keep Toronto Reading Festival 

This year's One Book for KTR is the classic dystopic science fiction novel Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury.

On Friday April 12 at 5:30pm come explore another classic dystopian novel with us: bring your popcorn for a screening of V for Vendetta, staring Hugo Weaving and Natalie Portman. Arguably one of the best dystopian movies ever made, it is based on the equally awesome graphic novel of the same name by the brilliant Alan Moore (other credits include Watchmen and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, to name a few).

V_For_Vendetta__58426.1320515807.400.400In an alternate future in which Britain is a fascist state, a shadowy masked vigilante named "V" tries to free England of its ideological chains, using terrorist tactics to fight against his totalitarian society. Upon rescuing a girl from the secret police, he also finds his best chance at having an ally.

One of the most memorable lines in the movie is the rhyme,

"Remember, remember the fifth of November, the gunpowder treason and plot. I know of no reason why the gunpowder treason should ever be forgot."

Did you know that this wasn't made up by Moore or the movie's scriptwriters? It's an actual English folk rhyme referring to the Gunpowder Plot to blow up parliament in 1605. "V" uses a likeness of Guy Fawkes, one of the plot's members, as his mask.

Interested in learning more? Here is some great books to check out on the Gunpowder Plot and Guy Fawkes.


Welcome! This blog is written by the Cedarbrae Library staff and we want it to become a place where you can find out what's going on in the branch and in the community. But not just that - we plan to write about all things we might find interesting.