Little free libraries, such as the one on Theresa Sutton’s property in Metchosin, have popped up around the West Shore. (Kendra Wong/News Gazette staff)

Little free libraries, such as the one on Theresa Sutton’s property in Metchosin, have popped up around the West Shore. (Kendra Wong/News Gazette staff)

Little free libraries popping up in the West Shore

Little libraries help to build community

Theresa Sutton is used to people coming and going at the little box sitting at the end of her driveway in Metchosin.

Inside the red box are more than two dozen books, including fiction from authors such as Dan Brown, Danielle Steele and James Patterson. There’s even a cookbook and a yoga book.

The books are part of Sutton’s little free library, where book worms can browse the two leveled-box for their next read and also drop off old books for others to enjoy.

“It’s an opportunity for people to pick up a book, something different and interesting,” said Sutton, who is the steward of the library and helps keep it tidy and swaps out books when needed. “People come along and put what they like reading in there and you discover new authors and other people might discover what you like to read.”

RELATED: Greater Victoria opens its 150th little free library

Sutton, who has lived in Metchosin for the past nine years, initially came across little libraries while visiting Oak Bay two years ago.

From there, she looked up the Little Free Library Association, a non-profit organization that aims to inspire a love of reading and community building.

The association then sent her a box for the library (which she painted to match the theme of her home), as well as a few books to get it started. Since then, it’s grown. Sutton sees people go through the little library a couple of times a week. She’s even added a bench for people to sit on as well.

“People like coming and discovering it – putting books in and taking them out,” Sutton said. “Families come with kids when they’re on a walk … promoting literacy is a good thing. It’s a nice free thing to do.”

Locally, the Greater Victoria Placemaking Network logs little free libraries across the region. Thus far, 186 little libraries have been logged, including several throughout the West Shore in View Royal and Colwood, as well as a few in Langford.

Teale Phelps Bondaroff, Pocket Place Project lead and volunteer board member with the placemaking network, said more little libraries have been popping up on the West Shore recently.

RELATED: Victoria’s little free libraries get 5,000th book

“Little free libraries are increasing in popularity because they serve as coral reefs for community – they bring people together and create spaces where people can meet neighbours, find great books, have great conversations, and make friends,” said Phelps Bondaroff, noting he recently delivered the network’s 5,000th book.

“They are also spreading across the region thanks to the hard work of the Greater Victoria Placemaking Network’s Pocket Places Project.”

For more information about little free libraries throughout the Capital Region or to get your own box for free visit victoriaplacemaking.ca.

kendra.wong@goldstream gazette.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Island Health has confirmed the first long term care facility outbreak in Greater Victoria at Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich. (Google Maps)
Island Health records first long-term care COVID outbreak in Greater Victoria

Veterans Memorial Lodge in Saanich confirms one positive staff member

Itty, a Siamese cat, has been missing since a house fire in Victoria’s Fernwood neighbourhood on Friday, Nov. 27. Her owner says she has white fur with blonde and grey markings. (Facebook/ROAM)
Cat goes missing after house fire in Fernwood neighbourhood

‘Itty’ has white fur, blonde and grey markings and blue eyes

An aerial view over Oak Bay. (Black Press Media File Photo)
An aerial view over Oak Bay and the Marina. Oak Bay residents pay the highest taxes on Vancouver Island. Don Denton/Black Press
Oak Bay secondary suites study considers units old and new

Secondary suites draft report due in new year

Westcoast Impressions plans to organize a COVID-19 friendly version of the event in 2021 at the Mary Winspear Centre after having cancelled the 2020 version against the backdrop of pandemic. The opening night of the 2019 Sidney Street Market featured more than 150 vendors lined along Beacon Avenue. (Black Press Media file photo)
Sidney Street Market plans for 2021 return at Mary Winspear Centre

Tentative plan calls for the event’s return to Beacon Avenue after COVID-19 pandemic

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
B.C. care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

A man walks by a COVID-19 test pod at the Vancouver airport in this undated handout photo. A study has launched to investigate the safest and most efficient way to rapidly test for COVID-19 in people taking off from the Vancouver airport. The airport authority says the study that got underway Friday at WestJet’s domestic check-in area is the first of its kind in Canada. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, Vancouver Airport Authority *MANDATORY CREDIT*
COVID-19 rapid test study launches at Vancouver airport for departing passengers

Airport authority says that a positive rapid test result does not constitute a medical diagnosis for COVID-19

A small crash in the water south of Courtenay Saturday afternoon. Two men had to be rescued, but reports indicate there were no serious injuries. Photo by Mike Chouinard
Small plane crash in Comox Valley waters Saturday afternoon

Two rescued from plane that had flipped in water; no serious injuries reported

A photo from 2017, of Nuchatlaht First Nation members outside court after filing a land title case in B.C. ( Submitted photo/Nuchatlaht First Nation).
Vancouver Island First Nation calls on B.C. to honour UNDRIP in historic title case

Nuchatlaht First Nation says Crown counsel continues to stall the case using the ‘distasteful’ argument that the Nation ‘abandoned’ their land

Most Read