08Sep 22

Media Advisory We are Story: Celebrating Reading, Writers, and Community

Saskatoon, September 6, 2022– On Thursday, September 22nd at the Broadway Theatre, three Saskatchewan authors will donate their time and talent for the good of literacy.

Bill Waiser and Louise Halfe will host a rousing evening of stories and laughter and oversee this celebration of literacy and the power of the written word. Sharon Butala, Paul Seesequasis, and Lisa Bird-Wilson will read from their work, along with several Foundations’ clients who have their own stories to tell. All proceeds from this fundraising event will go to Foundations.

Sheryl Harrow-Yurach, Foundations’ Executive Director, notes that these kinds of events raise the profile of the agency, but more importantly, help people better understand the need for community literacy programs: “Foundations is committed to making a difference for Saskatchewan individuals and families by ensuring they have the tools, knowledge and support to build literacy skills at every age level,” said Harrow-Yurach.

One person who understands this is Kristine Flynn, one of Foundations’ literacy coaches, “I’ve gained an appreciation for just how much bigger literacy is than reading books. Literacy is about understanding and being understood – whether that’s making appointments or ordering medications over the phone or being comfortable filling in forms or signing important documents.”

Historian Bill Waiser, winner of the 2016 Governor General’s Award for Non-Fiction and co-organizer of the event, believes that storytelling highlights the importance of literacy.  “The reading of stories, especially with children or grandchildren, allows families to make connections. Reading is a superpower that can take people places and enable them to do things.”

Louise Bernice Halfe – Sky Dancer, national Parliamentary Library Poet Laureate, was raised on Saddle Lake Reserve and attended Blue Quills Residential School. Louise is married, has two adult children and three grandsons. She graduated with a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Regina. She also completed two years of Addictions Counselor Training at St. Albert’s Nechi Institute where she also facilitated the program. “Literacy is not only food for the intellect, it challenges perceptions, and emotionality. It asks that we open mind and hearts not only to gain knowledge but to expand our vision and personal growth. For all those reasons I love to read.”

So, take a moment, think of your favourite story, and let it inspire you to purchase a ticket and support literacy.

Event Details
Date: Thursday, September 22, 2022
Time: 7 p.m.
Location: Broadway Theatre, 715 Broadway Avenue
Emcee: Bill Waiser
Host: Louise Half
Authors: Sharon Butala, Paul Seesequasis, and Lisa Bird-Wilson
Poetic Stylings of Peace Akintade

About Foundations Learning & Skills Saskatchewan
Established in 1979, Foundations is a volunteer literacy organization that provides adult, family, children’s, and financial literacy services to individuals and families. Literacy programs are delivered by staff and trained volunteers. Their vision is to help support a community that values literacy, and they believe that lifelong habits contribute to strong and resilient communities.

Sheryl Harrow-Yurach
t. 306-652-5448