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Library bookmobile visits prompt the creation
of a social Reading Club at PWL Peace River

December 5th, 2018

Residents of Points West Living Peace River are rekindling the joys of reading and sharing what they’ve discovered. This is thanks to an initiative by the Peace River Municipal Library to bring books to people in seniors residences who can’t easily make it to the library.

Library in a couple of milk crates

Starting this fall, library assistant Ashlyn Geddes has brought the library to the residents of PWL Peace River every second Tuesday afternoon. She doesn’t drive up with an actual bookmobile, but she does wheel in a handcart with a couple of milk crates full of books. Some selections have been reserved by residents in previous weeks, but most are books Ashlyn has set aside based on what residents have already been enjoying. She sets out the books in the second-floor dining room, and residents come by, peruse and select their books. Once that’s done, the newly created Reading Club retires to the library for some fun and conversation.

A reading club, not a book club

“We decided to start a Reading Club as opposed to a book club,” says resident Teresa MacNeil who has lived at PWL Peace River for five years. “Not everyone reads books but most people read. We would like everyone to share whatever they are reading - magazines, papers, Facebook… We can share and compare.”

“It encourages a pastime that has been lost, as it is so hard for many of us to get to the library,” adds Teresa. “It’s quite a distance to get to the library on my scooter, and I had gotten out of the habit of reading. Now every week I’ve read a couple of books; it feels so good.”

"Our goal is to keep it social"

Teresa and her reading friends have created a bright and cheerful space in the library, in hopes of encouraging more residents and family members to get involved in the Reading Club. “We bought our own mugs and put up book-themed posters,” says Teresa. “We make tea and have a big can of cookies on the table (we keep a box of digestives in case we don’t have any other treats). Our goal is to keep it social. If you’re in your room all the time you lose social contact.”

“It’s really fun,” says Teresa. “We started with three people in mid-October, and yesterday we had six, and counting. Everybody was chatting and that’s what I want it to be.”

Photo: Following the Peace River Municipal Library bookmobile visit, PWL Peace River Reading Club members (clockwise from left) Teresa MacNeil, Mercedes Ross, Marie Strachan, Rita Boyer, and Anne Morris, gather in the library for treats and the pleasure of visiting and talking about what they’ve been reading.

More photos at Flickr: Library bookmobile visits prompt the creation of a social Reading Club at PWL Peace River

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