Wednesday, July 1, 2009

First Chess in the Library Meet – Huge Success!

Yesterday was the very first meet of the "Chess in the Library" program. Surprisingly, we still had around 20 kids and a couple of adults come to play chess regardless of the bad weather. The librarian and I were both very happy that everything turned out to be quite successful. Not only people who lived in the local community came, many parents brought kids here all the way from Scarborough and other areas. I organized a Blitz tournament that day, dividing the players into two sections. Although we didn't have time to finish the tournament, everyone had a great time. They were a quiet group who followed all the rules that I announced. All my worries of having to deal with behavior problems of the kids disappeared at once. Looks like this program is going to run smoothly after all!

One reason I chose the public library as the location for this program is so that the chess players can be surrounded by a safe and quiet environment. Another important reason is that the library is where the resources are. Learning from reading books is something that not a lot of boys like to do. It's a fact that there are more girls coming to the library than boys. Therefore, to get the boys to read more books, we had a couple of chess books on display and after the program was over, a lot of kids not only borrowed the chess books but also other ones!

After the program was over, I was obviously very tired. The 2 hours of walking around, doing the pairings and helping the kids mark their result was not an easy job. However, even though I was so tired that I fell asleep when I got home, I still believe that this entire project (from first contacting the library to finalizing the flyer and to promotion) was definitely worth all my effort and time.
Canada needs to promote this game a lot more and I'm glad I can be a part of it.

My dream is that one day most of the public libraries in
Toronto will have this program and each have about 20 sets kept there. And week at every library location there will be around 20-30 people to come to play chess regularly. Each library will have one or more student volunteer to organize the program. Then every week I would be able to visit a different library and check on them. Our own website will be professional with lots of people viewing and checking for upcoming events. I could go on and on and tell you guys this entire picture of the kind of future I wish to see with all the details but then I think I would have to keep writing until tomorrow.

Everything in my dream is not something impossible to achieve. I think the only problem is the money to buy all the sets. The library's budget is very limited and the librarian told me that they can only afford to buy one set a month. I really don't want to charge the people coming to play chess money either. All I want is to see chess in
Canada grow and that chess can be a game everyone will know how to play. Other countries can do it why can't we? So if your dream is the somewhat similar to mine, I hope you can help this program by sponsoring some sets or some money, anything is greatly appreciated by me and all Canada's future chess players.

If you are a kind person who wishes to donate to the "Chess in the Library" program, you are more than welcome to contact me at

Thanks for everyone's support!! The future of chess in
Canada depends on all of you!
(written on Jun 21, 2009)

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