The province of B.C. announced $2 million for libraries in the North Island region to help improve digital collections and expand services.
The funding will allow library users to benefit from modernized technology, enhanced programs and services, and better access to information.
“Modern libraries are more than just rows and stacks of books. They are now places where people gather, learn, access technology, and serve as hubs for communities,” said Michele Babchuk, MLA for the North Island. “Libraries open doors to knowledge and resources that help people thrive, and by investing in our libraries, we’re investing in the future of our communities.”
The Vancouver Island Regional Library, which has branches in Campbell River, Gold River, Port Alice, Port Hardy, Port McNeil, Sayward, Sointula, Tahsis, and Woss, is receiving $2,044,280.72. The Alert Bay Public Library is also receiving $72,754.14.
“We love our local public libraries. They are a vital part of vibrant communities, delivering services we rely on every day,” said Anne Kang, Minister of Municipal Affairs. “From offering regular access to the internet, to delivering programs for families, newcomers, job seekers and seniors, this funding will go a long way to ensure libraries are helping people stay connected, access information and continue their lifelong learning.”
With this additional new funding, the province aims to enhance the province-wide library system with programs, resources and technology infrastructure that benefits people and communities throughout B.C.
All 71 B.C. public libraries and organizations that help libraries deliver their services will receive one-time grants totaling $45 million in addition to their annual operating funding.
“This will give libraries flexibility to address local priorities, including longer hours, bigger digital collections and better access to literacy and lifelong learning opportunities,” a release from the province says.
This funding gives libraries the flexibility to address local priorities while ensuring they are able to meet the evolving needs of their local communities over the coming years.