Newcomers often find that libraries in BC are more diverse and expansive than what they are used to. Our collections provide books and newspapers in many languages; we lend materials that aren’t associated with normal library lending practices, such as:
- Fishing rods and tackle through the Richmond Public Library,
- Cameras, camcorders, and other equipment through the Burnaby Public Library,
- Telescope Kits through the Bowen Island Public Library,
- ..and so much more..
Our libraries are fluid, adapting to the needs of our communities. As a newcomer to BC, you may be surprised to learn that you can ask your library to order materials, resources, plan workshops that you would like to see offered in your community and make any other suggestions that you believe will improve your library. These can be requested in languages other than English. Libraries respond to the demographics of their communities, striving to be inclusive and welcoming to all.
Request a Purchase at Your Library
Libraries in BC welcome suggestions for additions to their collections. This includes books, eBooks, eNewspapers, online resources, and more. Before suggesting something new, please check your library first to ensure that they do not already own the item you are suggesting.
The library does not purchase all recommended titles. There are a few criteria that are considered by librarians when considering the purchase of materials. Each library sets its own criteria, so be sure to review their suggestions for purchase page for further details.
If you’re a patron of the following libraries, please refer to these links to find out more information:
- The New Westminster Public Library
- The Surrey Libraries
- The North Vancouver City Library
- The West Vancouver Memorial Library
If your library is not listed, please refer to our libraries page.
Suggest a Program
In addition to suggesting a purchase, many libraries offer programs and workshops that help newcomers adapt to their new homes; for example, you can join the EAL Book Club at the Coquitlam Public Library, or participate in workshops offered by the Skilled Immigrant InfoCentre offered through the Vancouver Public Library.
Additionally, if there is a program or event that you would like to see at your local library, you can suggest this to your librarian: the Vancouver Public Library invites you to suggest a program or topic idea through their online submission form. They often partner with local organizations and individuals to deliver programs that interest you.
Suggest a Local, Indie Author
There are many independent and self-published authors in the Lower Mainland. If you are, or you know of, an independent or self-published author, the Fraser Valley Regional Library invites you to submit your work to their locations. The Local Indie Authors collection exists to showcase the new books of writers and illustrators in the Fraser Valley.
Each library is unique and is responsive to the needs of their communities. If you’re new to your community, ask your librarian to help familiarize you with your library and look for ways to include your needs in the future planning of your community. Be a part of the growth and the change of your community and help make it a more inclusive place for yourself and for those whose journey is just beginning.