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Sunday, October 1, 2023
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Open for exchange

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Open for exchange
Kara Thevenot, along with her eldest son Cayden, youngest son Tyrell, and husband Steven, look at the books available for exchange at the Family Resource Centre in Gateway Mall. -- Marjorie Roden/Daily Herald

The Family Resource Centre started an initiative on Saturday that merged the importance of reading, with the need to reduce waste.

The Centre’s Co-ordinator says that it is something which they hope to maintain as they look forward to promote literacy while taking care of the environment.

“It’s something that we can do, and encourage our children to think about the Earth,” explained Tobie Devitte, Co-ordinator of the Family Resource Centre.

The plan is to create a book exchange, where people can drop off gently used books suitable for a family audience, and where others can come and pick some up for themselves. Similar ideas exist in other communities worldwide, and Devitte said they’ve been impressive.

“The biggest thing we’ve seen going all year round is the Prince Albert Literacy Network,” she explained. “They have the little reading libraries, and that’s part of the ongoing work that we’re doing.”
One of the mothers who came in to Saturday’s book exchange with her young family was Kara Thevenot. She said the plan was a great opportunity for families.

“It’s great for the kids who maybe don’t all have access to books to be able to come here and spend time,” she said. “It’s a great place for people to come with their families, and it’s a great resource we have in the city of Prince Albert.”

“It just helps reduce waste,” Devitte added. “We all know that literacy is such a great thing for brain building and brain development, and the development of language and cultural identity.”

Devitte said buying children’s books can be very expensive. They also get worn out very quickly, which is why sharing gently used books is so important.

“We all know that little kids under the age of five can be pretty hard on books,” she explained. “Before they learn to read them, they learn to step on them, chew on them, and throw them. Sometimes, if we can have some gently used books, for those first learning to read, it can be very helpful.”

The resources available ranged from children’s primer books in both English and French, as well as some shape puzzles, and several cookbooks. The Family Resource Centre is located in Gateway Mall, across from Au Pair shoes.