Librarian – Darina Molloy, Leading the Way for Time to Read in Mayo

Wednesday, February 15th, 2017

Mayo County Librarian, Darina Molloy provided an account of her involvement with Time to Read this year. Read more below.

When Business in the Community approached Mayo County Council last year about the possibility of our getting involved in the Time to Read programme, the baton was eagerly grasped by Mayo County Library. I came on board as co-ordinator for the council and began the initial steps of sourcing volunteers from within the many sectors of the council. It was decided to focus on the Castlebar area to start with, and it wasn’t too difficult to find twelve volunteers, an increase of two on the proposed initial figure. This meant that Breaffy NS, the school whose application was approved, could add two extra children to their list, which they were quite happy about.

From the library’s point of view, the Time to Read initiative is exactly the kind of scheme we are delighted to be involved in. Reading with children on a regular basis and helping to foster in them a love of books and reading – what’s not to like? It is, after all, our very raison d’etre, and something we feel passionately about. The library’s involvement has also been very beneficial to the initiative, as we have been able to boost the Time to Read book collection by many multiples. Over the course of the first few weeks, a total of 106 books have been loaned to the school for use in the Time to Read sessions. As children have expressed interest in particular areas, the two librarian volunteers have been able to choose appropriate books and deliver them to the school.

I’d imagine most libraries would be only too happy to help out other volunteer companies in a similar way, so for those who are thinking of taking up the Time to Read challenge, it might be a good idea to contact your local library and check if they’d facilitate a block loan of suitable titles.

Our Time to Read children had their workplace visit last month and this proved to be a most enjoyable couple of hours in their company. Before Christmas, the children visited the library with their larger class groups, and the overwhelming sense of the day was how much they enjoyed browsing through the many and varied books. They have asked if they can visit the library again during the programme, and we’ll definitely try to make that happen. The reading sessions continue to be a delight, and all of the volunteers have expressed how much they are enjoying this initiative.

Darina Molloy
Assistant Librarian
Castlebar Library