Surrey Libraries Marks International Literacy Day with New Report Demonstrating Monetary Value of a Library Card
Surrey, BC - Surrey Libraries' fourth annual Literacy Day Report reveals that the average cardholder realizes more than six hundred dollars in value with their free library card. The information is part of new research presented in the report which demonstrates the benefits of the library in the community.
Key facts revealed in the 2015 Literacy Day Report include:
- the total value of benefit provided by Surrey Libraries to the community in 2014 was about $111.4 million;
- on average, Surrey Libraries cardholders realized a benefit of $610 each;
- an average cardholder visits the library 43 times and borrows 24 items;
- traditional print items like books and magazines are still the number one material accessed by cardholders at the library;
- on average, Surrey residents spend 113,500 hours per week using library resources and facilities.
"These numbers are a sign of the important place of libraries in Surrey and the role they play in providing for so many of our society's needs," said Surrey Libraries chief librarian Melanie Houlden, "With a wide range of reading materials in many languages... programs for kids and adults... and free wifi and access to computers, it's no surprise that the value of a Surrey Libraries card has been calculated at $610."
Surrey Libraries board chair Linda Stromberg said "About 95 per cent of our funding comes from public sources - $16 million dollars this past year. I am, therefore, particularly happy to see that for every dollar in public funding Surrey Libraries receives, our branches provide $7 in value to patrons."
Surrey Libraries also announced that it had met and surpassed its 2014 Get Carded campaign goal, with 21,112 new cardholders joining Surrey Libraries in the past year.
Is Your Library up for the Challenge? Nelson Public Library Is!
The City of Nelson is involved in a Community Voter Challenge with the goal of increasing voter turnout. Nelson Mayor Deb Kozak has challenged all local governments in the region to try to increase their turnout in the Oct. 19 election compared to 2011. This completely non-partisan initiative is intended to foster democratic participation, and get people (especially youth) involved in our future.
In support of the Challenge, the Nelson Library will host an on-site voter registration event on Sept. 16. Volunteers will hand out information on where to vote, ID requirements, what to do if you’re away on Election Day, etc. Volunteers will also assist people to register either electronically or via regular mail.
The Library is also developing a one-page information sheet with voting information on it, to be available to everyone interested.
Libraries across the province can assist with building awareness of the importance of everyone’s vote by hosting voter registration events. Contact your local Elections Canada office for information on how to do that. The Nelson Public Library will help by providing interested libraries with the one-page information sheet. Contact Chief Librarian June Stockdale at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Success for Surrey Libraries' Soirée: First-ever gala for literacy sells out
The inaugural gala fundraiser for Surrey Libraries' Literacy for Life campaign was held on July 11, 2015, raising more than $80,000 in gross revenues for the Library's literacy programming. The crowd of 300 was entertained by renowned Canadian jazz artist Denzal Sinclaire, following an elegant dinner al fresco in the Surrey City Centre plaza.
"We're thrilled by the tremendous community support," said Surrey Libraries chief librarian Melanie Houlden. "The money raised will contribute to our programs for children and adults who need help with basic literacy. Last year, our programs assisted more than 150-thousand people, and in the year ahead we want to do even more."
The Literacy for Life campaign supports Early Literacy, Workplace Literacy, Diversity/Multicultural programming and Read-Ability Services provided by Surrey Libraries.
To view pictures from this great evening, visit Surrey Soirée on Facebook.