Idea Exchange Receives Ontario Public Library Service Award for Multi-Sensory Room Project

Two members use the Multi-Sensory Room in the summer of 2023.

Idea Exchange was honoured to receive the Minister's Award for Innovation (Large Library Category) at the annual Ontario Library Association Super Conference. The award, which recognizes successful new approaches that demonstrate a positive impact in a community and are of continued value to public libraries, touted the library’s 2023 Multi-Sensory Room pilot project.

“On behalf of our Library Board and staff, we are thrilled to have been honoured alongside many worthy nominees and winners,” said Chrissy Hodgins, CEO, Idea Exchange. “The space is a testament to our commitment to reduce barriers to library service and to ensure our public spaces create a welcoming and inclusive environment for all.”

The pilot was launched at our Clemens Mill location as part of the Summer Reading Club program. The Multi-Sensory Room provided a relaxing space to help reduce agitation and anxiety, responding to members' sensory processing needs, providing a safe and soothing atmosphere. The use of the space exceeded expectations and community feedback was extremely inspiring.

Following the success of this award-winning pilot project, we are excited to announce that we are finalizing a permanent Multi-Sensory Room at Clemens Mill, and will be seeking to determine how to incorporate best practices at our other four locations across the city. The newly completed room uses soft seating, tactile sensations, reflective materials, and special lighting to create a grounding space for everyone.

The Multi-Sensory Room will be available at no-cost for 60-minute bookings. Call the staff at Clemens Mill at 519-740-6294 to book a time with your membership card. Online reservations will be made available in the future.

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1 North Square, Cambridge, ON N1S 2K6
Phone: 519-621-0460

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