Rossland Library outlines importance of literacy in the community

The Rossland Public Library is hoping for an increase in funding from the City to help them do more in the community.

The Rossland Public Library is hoping for an increase in funding from the City, which they said could help them to do even more for the community.

Katie Albright: from the Rossland Public Library led a delegation of Library Board members in council on Dec. 10.

Albright, the library director,  detailed the many innovations the library is pursuing in the community as well as outlining a few of the things that it hopes to expand on.

Albright said the library acts as the information centre of the community and has served Rossland since 1959, beginning with a modest 250 books.

“We’ve expanded over the years and now satisfy the needs of the community,” Albright said, adding that they provide many economic benefits to Rossland.

She noted three main categories that the library focuses on.

The first, providing services to local residents and facilitating literacy as an economic development vision; the second, supporting local businesses and self-employment visuals; and third, providing incentives for future investments and migration into the community.

In 2011, 52 per cent of elible residents have an active library card, which is 10 per cent higher than B.C.’s average.

An example of the services she gave the need to foster 21st century literary skills, from early childhood to lifelong learning, which pays long term dividends. A study showed that every dollar invested in early childhood education yields $7 in long-term education.

“Kids who do not read in the summer lose 6-8 weeks of what they learned in the previous school year, and by the end of the fifth grade students who do not read during the summer were behind their peers an average of two years,” she said. “We have a summer reading club offered through the library. It’s a provincially designed program aimed at encouraging reading through the school break. this year we had 102 children signed up to the program.”

The city will decide on the funding during budget time later in the year.