FOILS (Friends of the Ipswich Library Service celebrate 10 years)

Celebrating FOILS 10th anniversary are (from left) FOILS’ newest member Patrice Kuyer, current president Yvonne van de Wiel, inaugural president Anne Ryan, Australia’s oldest FOILS member Tom Spowart, 101-years-old, and Ipswich City Council Tourism and Libraries Committee Chairperson Councillor David Pahlke.
IPSWICH City Council has extended special thanks to the Friends of the Ipswich Library Service (FOILS) as they celebrate their 10th anniversary year.
Tourism and Libraries Committee Chairperson Councillor David Pahlke said council thanked FOILS for the valuable contribution they have made over the past decade to the Ipswich Library and Information Service.  “FOILS works very closely with library staff to provide a valuable opportunity for interested community members to become involved in their local library,” Cr Pahlke said.
“The events and activities delivered as part of the FOILS program enhance and promote the Ipswich Library and Information Service and also raise awareness of the role of the library within the community.”  Cr Pahlke said FOILS also helped to attract new members and visitors to Ipswich’s library branches.”  He said council particularly acknowledged the work of FOILS’ founding members and those who had made a significant contribution to the group’s success since its formation in October 2001.
“Among this group is Yvonne van de Wiel who is the current president and has held this position for eight consecutive years.”  Cr Pahlke said FOILS also had the distinction of having what was believed to be the oldest FOILS group member in Australia in 101-year-old Tom Spowatt.  “FOILS has more than 100 dedicated members (77 individual and 16 family memberships) who work hard each year to strengthen the library’s links with the community and we are very grateful for their support.
“Today’s membership figures represent a significant increase from membership figures at the end of the first year of 27 individual, four family and one corporate member.”
Cr Pahlke said there were currently around 160 Friends of Library groups in Australia.  “Seven of these are affiliated with public libraries in Queensland, namely Bundaberg Regional Libraries, Central Highlands Library Service, Ipswich Library and Information Service, Lockyer Valley Libraries, Mackay Regional Libraries, Sunshine Coast Regional Libraries and Toowoomba Regional Council.”
Cr Pahlke said in partnership with library staff, FOILS had introduced a significant number of initiatives and events over the past 10 years that had enhanced the Ipswich Library and Information Service’s program and encouraged community participation.
Activities hosted by FOILS include Friday Films with Friends, Lunch in the Library, the annual Literary Luncheon, regular book sales of surplus library stock, the Books for Babies project and other projects and activities during the year. “This year’s program featured some interesting guest speakers and topics including local artist, Donna Davis on Ipswich Portraits: Objects and Mementos, International Women’s Day  featuring two local identities, writer Pamela Lamb and  Australian and world renowned potter, Gwyn Hanssen-Pigott and DNA Analysis: Fact Versus Fiction with Kylie Rika from Queensland Health’s Forensic and Scientific Services.
Cr Pahlke said he wanted to encourage any Ipswich residents looking for a new activity to become involved with in 2012 to consider joining FOILS.  The group meets from 5.30pm on the fourth Wednesday of each month in Study Room 2 on Level 1 of the Ipswich Library, 40 South St, Ipswich. Membership costs $5 for individuals, $10 for families and $50 for corporate members. For more details, call 3810 6755 or go to the library website at

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