Important Update in the Forest – March 20, 2020

A lot has changed in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in these past few weeks. For our registrants, our readers, and our authors, this has been an incredibly challenging time.

Now more than ever, it is crucial to keep the love of reading alive and to support our writing, publishing, school, and library communities. Many of you have asked us new ways to engage with readers and parents virtually, and the Forest of Reading will do what we can to support you. 

We made a number of changes to major aspects of the program and we wanted to update you on these changes:

PASSWORD WEBSITE: The Forest of Reading is a paid program, however, in these unprecedented times, it is important our children, educators and library staff to have access to our program. The password website, which was previously only accessible to current registrants, is now open to the public for free at forestofreading.com. With over 500 resources for this year’s nominated titles and virtual author visits previously recorded, there is so much content for people to use. Please share it widely across all of your networks. We have also created images you may use on your social media channels. Please find them under “Resources.”

VOTING: We have extended voting in the school-aged programs until June 1. Voting can be done through the Forest of Reading website under “Voting” in the top menu. We will plan to announce the winners on June 16, 17, and 18. 

NOMINEES: Please connect with nominees via social media and encourage them to hold story time over social media or streaming platforms. CBC Books is keeping a running list of Canadian authors who are holding story time over social media as well as author events, readings, and festivals that will be held online this year.

VIRTUAL AUTHOR VISITS: Upcoming Forest Fridays and Mercre-LIT are currently being rescheduled. You can view past recordings of our virtual author visits under the “Resources” section of the website. 

FREE WEBINAR ON ENGAGING WITH PATRONS ONLINE: The Education Institute is holding on free webinar titled Together in Isolation: Engaging Your Users During COVID-19 on March 26 @ 12-12:30 p.m. EST with Ardis Proulx-Chedore. Learn what you can do to keep patrons involved, accessing collections, and engaged in this time of isolation.

KID AND TEEN COMMITTEES: We are still accepting applications for our Kid and Teen Committees. The application deadline is April 17.

FOREST OF READING FESTIVAL: A reminder that we have cancelled all Festival events this year. You can read the full update from March 6 here.

OUR OFFICIAL WHOLESALER: If you are able to, consider purchasing booksets from our official wholesaler, Tinlids. They are still receiving online orders.

STAY CONNECTED: Please share what you’re doing during this time, including virtual story times. Tag @ForestofReading and @IReadCanadian on Twitter.

For further updates from the Ontario Library Association, including resources for libraries and  updates on OLA operations and member services, please visit our webpage.

If you have any questions, please email us at forest@accessola.com. Please note that we may take slightly longer than usual to reply to your query, but that we will reply to all queries within 3-5 business days. 

Please take care of yourselves, your families and friends. Thank you for your continued support as we work together through this rapidly changing situation. Stay safe, stay healthy.