“Our award-winning After School Reading Club would not be able to function without the generous donations [of books] from ILF,” says Tammy Hickey, the librarian at Cunnamulla Library.
Tammy first heard about ILF’s Book Supply Program from a friend at the State Library of Queensland. Cunnamulla Library has now been receiving packs of books for 5 years.
“I have never seen a more beautiful collection of books. Whoever chooses them does a wonderful job!”
When they come in, Tammy sorts the books from ILF into tubs, according to the ages they are appropriate for - from Prep to Year 6. Conscious of how important it is to have books in homes as well as in the library, Tammy presents each child who comes along to the Reading Club with a book to take home and keep.
The small town of Cunnumulla in south-west Queensland lies 750 kilometres west of Brisbane. It has a high Indigenous population, but few of the kids living there have ready access to books.
The library also runs several other reading programs. Kids from the local kindergarten, as well as Prep and Years 1 and 2 students from the local state primary school, love the puppet books especially. Crunchy Choc (by Sam Lloyd), Cuddly Koala (by Emma Goldhawk), Little Puppy (Chronicle Books) and Hairy Maclary (by Lynley Dodd) are firm favourites.
Another popular program is the Seniors/Students Buddy Reading Club where community elders and Cunnamulla senior citizens read one on one with students “who have displayed exemplary behaviour during the month”.
In the Mums and Bubs Group, the cloth and board books are very well received. Most of the mothers can’t believe that they are able to take a book home for their baby.
“We can keep them?” they ask incredulously, and are thrilled when they are told “Yes!”
“We start reading young at Cunnamulla Library,” Tammy explains.
ILF sends several sets of books each year up to Cunnamulla. Some go into the library collection, some are used over and again in the reading clubs, and some are gifted for the kids to take home.
“There is always great excitement within the community when the books arrive … And we are eternally grateful for [ILF’s] supply and support. Please know how much our community uses and appreciates these beautiful titles.”
- Posted 28 September, 2016