Why Telling Tales

Stories connect us to our past, our future, and each other. Through stories we bond with our family, our friends, and our heroes. We learn, we dream and we grow. Telling Tales celebrates stories. We do this by bringing together Canadian authors, illustrators, musicians and storytellers with their audience – our children. Telling Tales is a yearlong reading campaign dedicated to promoting literacy and inspiring a love of reading. It kicks off in May, peaks at our free, one-day Festival in September, and continues celebrating stories throughout the year. 


Our Mission

To build a national reading campaign and festival that promotes children’s stories and a love of reading, while raising awareness and support for local literacy programs in our community.

Our Vision

To be the best children’s literary festival in Canada.

Long-Term Goals

Our wish is that everyone who attends the Telling Tales Festival will take home a spark of creative inspiration. If each year we can convert a few reluctant readers into avid readers we will have accomplished a very important goal.

Children and families with an understanding and appreciation for the written word will be able to explore a much wider range of opportunities in life. The Telling Tales team and growing family of supporters know that tackling literacy is an essential step in breaking the cycle of poverty. This is why our festival has a long-term goal of ultimately strengthening and supporting much needed literacy programs in the Hamilton area and our surrounding communities.

Why is there such a need in Hamilton and the surrounding communities?

Hamilton has many challenges. It is a city where one in five people live below the poverty line, and nearly half of the adult population has difficulty reading and writing. If you can read this, you understand that reading is freedom.

When we have truly strengthened literacy programs locally – to the stage where we can see our literacy standards are rising and the need in our community is diminishing – then we will know we have played a part in helping many to live full and rewarding lives.