At the October 12, 2017, breakfast honoring volunteers of the Blair-Caldwell African American Research Library (BCAARL) and Western History and Genealogy Department (WHG), the number 38,000 came up quite a bit.
Why that number?
Thirty eight thousand is the number of work hours volunteers have contributed to WHG and BCAARL over the last year. This is an amazing feat, which equals the work of 18 full-time staff members!
The celebratory breakfast, held in the Central Library's Vida Ellison Gallery, was a thank you for the hours (and years!) volunteers have dedicated to helping BCAARL and WHG achieve their missions of sharing resources and services about African-American History, Western History, Genealogy and the Conservation Movement in the American West.
Next, Jim Kroll (Manager of BCAARL/WHG), Michelle Jeske (City Librarian) and Veletta Hopes (DPL Volunteer Program Administrator) expressed their gratitude and stressed just how vital the work of volunteers is to the success of BCAARL, WHG and DPL.
Next, volunteers Peter Savory, Erin McElroy, Anne Mills, Deborah Parsons and Iris Hawkins addressed the room and shared their unique stories. They described the historical collections they've worked with and just how they came to be volunteers for DPL. While some sought work experience for their schooling, others saw volunteering as a way to keep their minds active and the history of a rapidly-changing Denver preserved.