Many newcomers, upon discovering their local library, are surprised to find the wealth of information and services specifically designed to help them settle in their new home. The West Vancouver Memorial Library is no exception.
To help you learn to use your library, and the many services they offer, they created a five-minute video titled: Welcome to the Library. This video is available in SEVEN languages. Yes, you read that right: *7*: English, French, Farsi, Korean, Chinese, Tagalog and Japanese.
Getting a membership to the West Vancouver Memorial library and, in fact, any library in BC, is free AND easy. All you need is some identification that includes your photo, your name, and your current address (such as a driver’s license, or a telephone bill and your passport), and you will receive your free library card. Your library card gives you access to many online resources, and allows you to take materials home with you, including:
- Books in English, French, German, Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Persian
- DVDs – including foreign films, documentaries, instructional programs
- Music CDs
- Popular magazines
- Newspapers from around the world
- Downloadable ebooks, audiobooks, and music
- Books on our Kindle e-readers
The West Vancouver Memorial Library offers events and classes specifically designed for newcomers to Canada. Some ongoing classes and programs include:
- English Corner– Practice your English conversation skills with other intermediate-level speakers.
- English Conversation Circle– Improve your English skills by reading and discussing stories.
- Let’s Talk– A weekly discussion group for English language learners interested in improving their listening and speaking skills.
- Children’s Story times– Bring your baby or toddler for a half-hour session of songs, rhymes, puppets and stories.
Additionally, the library has many services specifically designed to help you feel comfortable in your new home:
- Trained, qualified, helpful staff
- Public computers with Microsoft Office, Skype, scanners, and printers
- Comfortable spaces to meet, read, study, talk or work
The West Vancouver Memorial Library also offers newcomers an opportunity to volunteer at the library. Library Champions are volunteers for libraries who are new Canadians and enthusiastic about libraries. They introduce other newcomers to the wealth of resources at public libraries. Many of the volunteers of this program have found it impactful to step actively into the role of being of service to the community. Many volunteers have commented on how powerful it is to feel that they’re making a valuable contribution and giving back to the community. If you would like to learn more about the West Vancouver Memorial Library, or the Library Champions Project, I encourage you to register for an information session schedule on February 22nd. It is a great project!