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Live In for Literacy @ Scott: Jan 23-30

You may recall this statement, in our IL Manifesto?

“Our overarching purpose in developing an Information Literacy program is to graduate critically-engaged, information literate citizens able to fully participate in the information society across all levels – scholarly, personal, vocational and political.”

As such, the Scott Reference IL team is supplementing its usual offerings with something a bit unusual this year. We’ve agreed to be a participating library in the 3rd annual Live-in-for-Literacy event. More details are at the link below, but essentially 2 students will be camping out in our lobby from January 23rd to the 30th, in a tent placed in the alcove by the front doors in an attempt to raise money to build a library in India and publish 10,000 copies of a local language children’s book. The Scott Library is joining 8 other university libraries in this endeavour, which began two years ago at the Stauffer Library at Queen’s University.


Two students must eat, sleep and live in a designated area of the library for 7 consecutive days. During the seven days, they will be raising awareness about Live-in for Literacy and fund-raising for the cause. All proceeds go to the registered charity Room to Read.

Their experience will be recorded live on webcam (, to be viewed by audiences around the world. Additionally, we’ve decided to offer some relevant academic programming to coincide with the event, and I’m very pleased to say that Kent Murnaghan will kick off the Research Frontiers series this year with a workshop on “Difficulties in Accessing Non-Western Sources of Information” which you are more than welcome to attend. Details on Kent’s session as well as the rest of our series are here.

From an information literacy standpoint, we hope these conjoined events help foster in our students an awareness of the value of libraries, issues surrounding the digital divide and various other hurdles to access to information globally.

I wanted to alert you to the Live-In for Literacy in part so that you won’t be startled by the presence of the tent and campers next week — but more importantly to encourage you to donate to this great cause. I realize many eyes are suddenly (and rightly) on Haiti in the aftermath of the devastation there, however, I hope you will still consider supporting our students and the larger cause of literacy itself and make a contribution to this worthy cause. Students will be collecting money at their campsite, or alternatively you can make a donation online or by mail.


Lisa Sloniowski