I read last night at Parkdale Pride at the Parkdale Community Health Centre. I love the place. I once co-facilitated a group for lesbians there and more recently co-ran an anti-oppression training with staff and board members of the centre.
Being a community organizer and social worker, there is something very comfortable about reading at community events in local community centres. I’ve done a few of these types of readings already and they are tend to have some similarities: run-off-their-feet organizers, lots of (sometimes) coordinated volunteers, past clients who come and say hello, old co-workers, a friendly audience, terrific talent.
These events are more than just book readings–they are a means of community engagement. They allow social services and creativity to blend in a way that brings out people of all stripes to participate in the life of the community.