Connecting Lake Simcoe's Community

It has been some time since the Town of Innisfil has witnessed the direct effects of a global hardship like COVID-19.

In response to this, the Innisfil IdeaLAB & Library’s Special Collections Librarian, Kate Zubczyk, is taking this time to acknowledge the significance of living history -- calling for photos, stories, and documentation to add to the local digital archive Our Stories Innisfil.

In our lifetimes, most of us have never seen the temporary closure of public spaces, have not had to work and play from home, nor have many of us witnessed what it was like to go to our neighbourhood grocery store only to see that some of the necessities were gone.

These rapid changes have inspired the Innisfil community to come together in unique ways and the library has noticed that residents of all ages are documenting their stories and experiences - both positive and negative.

“This initiative will collect our various perspectives and insights to shed some light on the effects of COVID-19 in Innisfil and beyond”, Zubczyk says. “The biggest obstacle to collecting social history like this is the impression that every single one of us believes that our stories are "not important" or "too boring". It's not true! What we absolutely DO need is people being honest about what it's like to try to work from home while home schooling your six-year-old, being a teenager isolated from friends, the anxiety you may have around going to the grocery store, or the hopefulness you feel when you see stories of encouragement on social media.”

With your contributions, your local library will be able to document and preserve a realistic story for future generations, sharing intimate details, lessons, and primary information that can be used to inform historical studies, research papers, and more, revealing what it was like living through this difficult time.

Kate Zubczyk, Special Collections Librarian, is asking for the community to submit written journals, diaries, blog posts, video blogs, social media posts, photos, and videos alike, to contribute to this invaluable collection of historical documents. These can be submitted to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or www.ourstoriesinnisfil.ca/Covid-19

Share your story!

Submitted photo: James and Helen Blain, proprietors of the Gilford Store from 1885-1919, staying informed.

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