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A lifelong love of literacy

Librarian Grace Dawson with Lillian MacVicar, 96.

As a young girl growing up in Portage le Prairie Manitoba Lillian MacVicar loved reading books – especially the Anne of Green Gables series.

She read all her life, detective and police novels, the good book, you name it.

Now in the twilight of her life she finds reading keeps her mind sharp and helps pass the time for her at Andrews of Stratford retirement home.

 “I’ve always loved to read, I am fascinated with people’s lives, what they make of themselves,” the 96-year-old former dental clerk said.

MacVicar is one of the residents who enjoy books offered through the recently expanded Public Library Service Community Care Facility Delivery Service.

Every six weeks a new collection of both regular and large print books, CD’s, DVD’s and audio books is delivered to 23 Island facilities. Residents can borrow materials from that collection until the next delivery arrives and the materials are refreshed.

The Provincial Public Library Service has recently expanded its Community Care Facility Delivery Service so more Island seniors like Lilian and other facility residents can access enjoy library services from the comfort of home.

This program gives residents at nursing homes, community and long term care facilities across the province an opportunity to borrow library materials they might not otherwise be able to access.

The Community Care Facility Delivery Service began as a pilot offered at four locations in 2009. Since then the free program has expanded to another 27, ten of which were added this past fall.

The mandate of the Public Library Service is to serve all Islanders, said program coordinator librarian Grace Dawson.

“This is a great way to do that.”

The PLS has a collection of materials set aside specifically for the program. That collection continues to grow to meet the ever increasing demand for the service. The program’s entire annual budget of $7,000 is used to purchase additional materials.

MacVicar estimates she has transported herself through more than 30 books since the program came to Andrews of Stratford three years ago.

“Life can get pretty dull if you don’t have something else to think about.”

For more information on the program visit the website at

And for more information on the Public Library Service visit

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