TORONTO, Oct. 18, 2022 /CNW/ – Today Scotiabank announced it’s taking steps to provide better access to books in underserved communities by becoming one of the largest supporters of Little Free Library—the world’s largest book-sharing movement. To help ensure literature is available and accessible to all, the Bank is expanding its partnership with Little Free Library to address a real challenge: making great literature more available to communities that have less access to books.
Little Free Libraries are publicly accessible, free book exchanges that individuals apply to have installed at their homes. As they come with a cost to install, they are often disproportionately available in areas with more disposable income, leaving communities without the required funding underserved. Little Free Library refers to these areas as ‘book deserts,’ geographic areas with sparse access to books, such as public libraries, affordable bookstores and Little Free Libraries themselves.
And that’s where sponsors such as Scotiabank can make a meaningful difference in the effort to make literature available to all communities, regardless of cost. According to Little Free Library, studies have repeatedly shown that books, especially in the hands of children, have a meaningful impact on literacy. The more books available near or in the home, the more likely a child will learn to read.
Scotiabank has built custom Little Free Libraries and is locating them in ‘book deserts’ across the country. Custom Little Free Libraries are currently in select Scotiabank branches and will eventually be rehomed to neighbourhoods and communities most in need.
Scotiabank will once again be donating thousands of copies of this year’s Scotiabank Giller Prize shortlisted novels to Little Free Library stewards across Canada. To read one of this year’s Giller nominated novels courtesy of Scotiabank, Canadians can “take a book, share a book” by visiting one of Canada’s Little Free Libraries in their neighbourhood.
Some interesting facts about the 2022 Scotiabank Giller Prize shortlist:
- Women dominate this year’s shortlist.
- Two short story collections and three novels have been recognized.
- Noor Naga and Tsering Yangzom Lama are both debut novelists.
- Rawi Hage was longlisted in 2018 for his novel Beirut Hellfire Society and shortlisted in 2006 and 2008 for De Niro’s Game and Cockroach, respectively.
- Suzette Mayr was longlisted for the Prize in 2011 for her novel, Monoceros.
- Lesser Known Monsters of the 21st Century is Kim Fu’s third novel.
- For the first time, all nominees are writers of colour
Scotiabank is also making space for Canadian storytellers with billboards and signage across the country—where Canadians can scan a QR code to read an extended preview of all the 2022 Scotiabank Giller Prize novels.
“At Scotiabank, we are proud of our partnership with the Giller Foundation and the role we play in bringing the works of many talented Canadian authors to readers from coast to coast to coast,” said Laura Curtis Ferrera, Chief Marketing Officer, Scotiabank. “Putting new Little Free Libraries in communities across the country is one way that we can work towards making great Canadian literature more accessible for all.”
“We were elated when Scotiabank approached us to partner last year to help advance their support for great Canadian literature,” said Greig Metzger, Executive Director, Little Free Library. “Now, we’re excited to double down on our shared mission to actively build communities with a love of reading. By continuing to advocate for access, and donating thousands of brand-new novels nationwide, Scotiabank is bringing the best of Canadian storytelling to deserving citizens.”
To kick off the donations, Scotiabank has built its first custom Little Free Library for a new steward in Keswick, Ontario. Canadians who live in ‘book deserts’ and would like to house a custom Little Free Library of their own can apply through the Impact Library Program.
The criteria used to evaluate applicants to the Impact Library Program include:
- Location: Is the location confirmed? Will it be visible and accessible to the intended audience?
- Partnership: Will a partner organization assist with the library?
- Underserved: Will the library reach an underserved audience?
- Book Need: Is there little or no book access in this community?
- Impact: Will it promote literacy, foster community engagement, and have a community impact?
- Maintenance: Is there a plan to maintain a book supply and the library?
“I always wanted a Little Free Library, but I couldn’t afford the funds to install and maintain it,” said Samantha Cannarella. “I jumped at the chance to become a steward at no cost because I live in a small community with many kids, and few Little Free Libraries. My hope is the kids in our neighbourhood can use our new library and have easier access to more books.”
To learn more visit: https://www.scotiabank.com/ca/en/about/sponsorships/arts/giller-prize/lfl.html