Anna Bay gets its first street library

STREET LIBRARY: Birubi Pre-School director Ruth Diemar with children Harlow Small, Havana Borg, Boston Jackson, Lily Grecian, Xander Hart, Talon Rolston and Rhylin Green.
STREET LIBRARY: Birubi Pre-School director Ruth Diemar with children Harlow Small, Havana Borg, Boston Jackson, Lily Grecian, Xander Hart, Talon Rolston and Rhylin Green.

Birubi Point Community Pre-School has established a street library outside the centre's Anna Bay gate entrance.

Pre-school director for the past 32 years, Ruth Diemar, said the decision to join the growing number of street libraries across Australia was to encourage literacy and a sense of community. [It joins other street libraries in Port Stephens at Boar Harbour and Corlette.]

"Our library is accessible from the street, it is open to children and adults alike and it allows us to share the joy of reading with our community," Ms Diemar said.

"The children and their families did the fundraising to allow us to purchase the library and stand, and after one of the parents kindly donated his time to paint the library, the children decorated it with their hand prints."

The library, located outside the centre gates in Fishermans Bay Road, is open Monday to Friday, from 8.30am to 3.30pm for anyone to use. "It is open to the entire community, where children and adults can borrow or donate a book as they please. It is also available for those families who find it difficult to travel into Salamander Bay."

Ms Diemar said books were forever changing and that reading fostered a love of literature for young children. "We want to encourage book reading throughout the community, regardless of a person's age."

Street Libraries, established in November 2015 to encourage literacy and a sense of community, are essentially a box of books, planted in a public space that are accessible from the street.

Founder Nic Lowe said that the books come and go, "no-one needs to check them in or out and people can simply reach in and take what interests them. Our motto is 'take a book, give a book, share a book'. I believe that books are the foundation of all knowledge. In these times of digital overload, we forget that long form literature can express complex and nuanced ideas, concepts and stories that enrich our lives in ways a 20 word facebook post can't."

Ms Diemar welcomes the input from anyone who has a book, or two, they think others would enjoy.

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