Honouring Helmi Bracco

2021 Library Endowment Tribute Campaign

We are thrilled to announce that we met our goal for this campaign, raising almost $35,600 to contribute to our Endowment Fund! Thank you so much for all your generous contributions, your support will help ensure the financial viability of the Canmore Public Library in the future. If you missed this campaign, but would like to contribute, we encourage you to do so via the Banff Canmore Community Foundation.

The Canmore Library was extremely important to Helmi Bracco, a well-known Canmore resident who fought cancer for many years as a young mother and passed away in 2014. She was extremely involved in the library, served on the library board in the 1990s, and was deeply committed to issues related to literacy, says her daughter Annaliisa Sando.

“Helmi was a woman of conviction and action,” Annaliisa explained adding, “Helmi's life was always surrounded by books and she passed on a deep love of libraries and literacy.” 

Helmi appreciated all the things a library represents in a community – a welcoming “hub” where people can connect, a place for people to explore and learn at their leisure, a place for reflection. All made possible because of dedicated and passionate community-minded people like Helmi Bracco.

"Reminding the community of all that Helmi accomplished helps connect the role of the Library to the quality of life in Canmore," says Anne Baker, Chair of the Canmore Public Library Board. "And it helps directly build the long-term sustainability of the library."

“This is about the future of the Library” says Michelle Preston, Library Director. “On our 50th anniversary, it’s wonderful to be working towards our 100th.”

Friends of the Canmore Library Leading the Way

The Library Endowment Fund was established in 2019 with strong initial contributions including seed sponsors, Elliott and Margie Bingham, and the Friends of the Canmore Library. We’d like to build upon this great start by raising $20,000 in memory of Helmi, and reach the first endowment goal of $100,000. The Friends of the Canmore Library have pledged $2000 to start off the contributions.

The Friends are there to support the Library, ensuring it can reliably offer its programs and services, even during difficult economic times, and to innovate and adapt when a library need is identified. Their primary fundraising activity, the ever-popular book sales, have been severely restricted during the pandemic and the Friends are eager to throw their support behind this fundraising tribute campaign.

“We are a group of people who believe in the importance of a vibrant library in Canmore. We are committed to providing additional support now and want to do all that we can to ensure the long-term sustainability of the Library in our community,” declared Linda Korsbrek, President, Friends of the Canmore Library.

Your Contribution will be Matched, Doubling the Value Immediately

Swarfco Ltd. has pledged to match contributions and once again, Elliott and Margie are also stepping up to match during the Helmi Bracco tribute.

“We really want to see the endowment grow as soon as possible” Elliott Bingham says, adding that it offers independence for the Library when there are changes in government funding. “The long-term sustainability of the Library is crucial.”

Securing Your Tribute Through the Banff Canmore Community Foundation

The Banff Canmore Community Foundation (BCCF) allows the Library Board to harness BCCF’s administrative and financial investment management power. It also helps both organizations strengthen relationships with a wider network of community-minded people. Working together, it can only get stronger.

To donate in memory of Helmi Bracco and make a contribution to the Canmore Library Endowment Fund, please click here.