Crystal Knudsen, president of Rotary Club of Port Alberni, restocks the little library in front of Ladybird Engraving on Margaret Street. <ins>The Rotary club is working with Literacy Alberni to revive the libraries.</ins> (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

Crystal Knudsen, president of Rotary Club of Port Alberni, restocks the little library in front of Ladybird Engraving on Margaret Street. The Rotary club is working with Literacy Alberni to revive the libraries. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

Port Alberni Rotary Club helps revive little libraries

“We used to have a huge warehouse space but we had to give that up before COVID.”

Literacy Alberni’s little library program has been revived, thanks to teamwork between Literacy Alberni, the Rotary Club of Port Alberni and Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District.

The coronavirus pandemic and the loss of warehouse space just before COVID-19 restrictions came into play meant Literacy Alberni had little space to either store books or allow volunteers to sort donations. As a result, some libraries have been looking a bit thin on books, and those inside buildings that were closed due to COVID-19 were inaccessible.

“Since COVID we have been asking people if they have books to stick them in a little library themselves,” said Rebecca Dixon, literacy services coordinator for Literacy Alberni.

“We used to have a huge warehouse space but we had to give that up before COVID.”

When the Rotary Club of Port Alberni realized the libraries needed some TLC, they approached Literacy Alberni about putting in some volunteer hours to help. “I’m always blown away how much Rotary clubs do in Port Alberni,” a grateful Dixon said.

“I wasn’t surprised that they offered. It’s amazing for us that they volunteered for this.”

There is a list of all the little library locations on the Literacy Alberni website, literacyalberni.ca/little-libraries/.

There are two book bins at the Third Avenue Recycling Depot that will be available for drop-off book donations starting in February.

Volunteers from Literacy Alberni sort through the books at the recycling depot, boxing them up to store in the Alberni Valley News’s warehouse.

Rotary members are then able to pick up boxes of books from the AV News and fill their designated libraries whenever they have time.

Alberni-Clayoquot Regional DistrictliteraryPort Alberni