Archive for the Volunteers Category

Furry Friends Make Great Listeners and Companions

Therapy Dogs Lend a Kind Ear to Children in the Tales to Tails Program

Reading to a dog

While many have come to know the dog as man’s best friend, the Santa Cruz Public libraries have proved that they can be so much more.

Started at the Santa Cruz Public Libraries almost four years ago, Tales to Tails is a program which allows children to read to attentive and kind therapy dogs and cats for periods of 20 minutes each week. With around 40 different handler teams at the eight different locations, coordinator of the program Laura Whaley loves witnessing the confidence boost these dogs provide the children with.

“The kids will interact with [the animals] in such a fantastic way and it’s fun to watch and very moving,” Whaley said.

Aside from the obvious benefit of being “able to play with the doggies,” Whaley said she gains immense joy from watching the children come back week after week to read to their furry companion. Considering most of the dogs stay within one branch of the library, the children are able to become familiar and comfortable with many of the dogs and cats.

Whaley said that this past weekend some of the children are coming up on their 50th visit to the Tales to Tails program.

“The kids who get involved tend to stay involved with the program,” Whaley said.

Therapy Dog to read to


For those interested in becoming volunteers or signing up for the program, please visit

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Exciting Blog Update

Hello fellow booklovers!

Anna and Sydney here — the Friends of the Public Libraries new bookstore interns! Our main job will be updating and maintaining this blog weekly, so we thought we’d give you a preview of the upcoming schedule.

We will be updating this blog Mondays and Thursdays of each week. Mondays, come read about all the wonderful events hosted by the library. These postings will give you both detailed information on upcoming events and how you can attend, as well as an inside look on the process which goes into putting on the myriad of events the library has to offer. Learn how you can be part of the fun, while supporting your library at the same time. Thursdays, each of us will be focusing on a different part of the library and will give a more personal take on what the library has to offer.

Stay tuned on Thursday, March 6th for our introductions and more details on what we’ll each be writing about. If there is anything library-related you would like to know more about, please let us know in the comments section.