In November 2015, Spellbinders welcomed Cherry Creek Spellbinders as its newest Chapter. The origin of the group started with its chapter leader, Dr. Jim Hilton’s interest in storytelling from a trip to Ireland in 2013, and was formed when he discovered that one of the few school districts in Metro Denver without a chapter was Cherry Creek.
District leaders including Superintendent, Dr. Harry Bull, Executive Director of Elementary Education, Mr. Chris Smith and some elementary school principals who supported the formation of the group and opened their buildings to showcase the power of storytelling and work between seniors and children to foster relationships and a love of a good story. The chapter started with a small group of retired Cherry Creek employees and interested community members, initial training was done in cooperation with the Littleton School District chapter, and this group of dedicated people made the most of their invitations to work in select schools, raise money to offset insurance and training expenses, and share their good work with friends and colleagues.
Fall 2017 the chapter will welcome new members and have grown to over 30 storytellers. We intend to expand our reach within the district from six schools to around 15 in hopes of eventually bringing stories to all forty-six schools.
Recruitment, retention, and continual professional development are on-going challenges, but we are proud of our work and our Spellbinders!