Richmond Public Library, Canada

Canada is one place that a lot of Filipinos love to migrate to. A few years ago, i joined the bandwagon and also rallied about the benefits of moving to Canada. Our family has even submitted our application forms already but after some hiccups and re-evaluation, we decided to stay in the Philippines.

This summer we visited Vancouver again. We stayed with our cousins in Richmond and got a feel of what it was like living there. Amidst the clean city and family-friendly environment, one place that i found quite extraordinary was their public library.

After some research on the net, i found out that there were a number of libraries in the Richmond area. The one that we visited was the main library in Brighouse.

Entrance to the libray (photo taken by selihpxe8)
I was amazed at the number of books, magazines, and even DVDs that are available for rent. More amazing is that you can borrow and browse for free! The number of materials is a lot more extensive than most of our bookstores here in the Philippines.
I am not a big fan of libraries maybe because i really did not have a very good impression of them growing up. When i was younger, going to the library meant that I had to do research for a school assignment or write a book report. It was almost never fun. This is why i love the idea of the Richmond Public Library. You will see kids excitedly reading books and learning through the available e-centers.  While the grown-ups can browse the web for free using the available desktops, the kids has a really cool space (Kid's Place) with multiple i-Pads that have pre-installed educational games for them. I know some friends and families with kids who say this is their family's favorite place to go during weekends. Isn't that such a blessing for parents who always try to look for fun ways of learning for the kids?

As mentioned earlier, the library does not only house books but even all of the newly released DVDs and magazines. Each copy comes with a bar code.  You can just get what you need and self-check out by scanning the bar codes before you leave. The rental period is normally around 30 days which, i feel, is a very reasonable timeframe.

The library does not have a quiet atmosphere. There is a kind of buzz when you enter. From the families excitedly discussing which new DVD to rent to the kids running to their parents with a ton of books they'd like to borrw -- you just know that excitement is in the air. I mean, imagine going to Fully Booked/Powerbooks or a music/video store and being told that you can take anything you like for free. You just need to return them after a month. Wouldn't you also be excited?
Visiting the library has made me realize how much i want to instill learning through reading to my children. I truly wish we have the same facility here in the Philippines where our family can enjoy learning together during weekends.  But then again, having no similar venue here should not stop us from teaching our kids that reading is fun. We have mega bookstores here where we can browse and purchase the books that we like. We may not be able to rent for free but i personally believe that books are a worthy investment anyway.

For those of you living in Canada or visiting the Richmond area, do check out the Brighouse library. Trust me, it's not your ordinary library.

100-7700 Minoru Gate
Richmond, B.C.
V6Y 1R8

Learn more about the Richmond Public Libraries here

Unknown  – (June 7, 2012 at 2:43 PM)  

I love libraries and have fond memories of visiting one growing up. We used to have one in Tempe AZ where I spent 3rd grade. When I came back, I was appalled at the state of libraries in the Philippines. I wish we could have decent public libraries here.

Tiffany  – (June 7, 2012 at 3:33 PM)  

That's true. I hope this message reaches some of our local government officials so that we can open something similiar in the Philippines.

Anonymous –   – (July 5, 2012 at 12:34 PM)  

I think my heart literally ached when I read about the iPads and saw the photos. I have long been wishing for good quality public libraries (and more museums) here in the Phils., especially after having been to Singapore's National Library and Museum, super nakakainggit talaga. Well in the meantime, I hoard books from Booksale for my kids. You can find awesome titles there (even similar ones found in Fully Booked) for a fraction of the cost.

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