ILF Relationships Manager David Stewart with Gail Connolly, General Manager St Georges River Council.
In 2021, Georges River Council Libraries ran an overdue fines amnesty that forgave the fines of over 700 of its library members, while also raising money for the Indigenous Literacy Foundation (ILF).
Their aim was to reconnect library members with the library and during the amnesty over $20,000 worth of fines were forgiven in exchange for a small donation to the ILF.
Having worked with the ILF in the past, Georges River Council Libraries was keen to cement their relationship with the Foundation and continue to support the Foundation’s impactful work.
700 library users now have their memberships reactivated and can use the full range of Georges River Libraries’ services.
“This was a priority for Georges River Libraries as fines often disproportionately affect the socioeconomic groups who benefit most from library services.” said Business Innovation Librarian, Martin Craddock.
The amnesty promoted inclusion and helped spread the joy of reading in the Georges River region. By supporting the ILF, the project also spread the joy of reading to remote Communities that the ILF works with.
Since the goals of the amnesty and the vision of the ILF are so closely aligned, Martin explained that it just made sense to everyone.
“We share common goals of boosting literacy and addressing social justice issues to foster a more inclusive and cohesive society. Donating to the ILF makes an immediate and tangible impact.” said Martin.
Having the ILF as the fundraiser of the amnesty also helped to engage the local community in the project.
The amnesty was an opportunity for the staff to reconnect with disengaged library members and have meaningful conversations about the libraries’ facilities.
“Knowing that the funds donated are having such an impact gave a sense of satisfaction to our staff and library members alike.”
ILF Relationship Manager, David Stewart, pictured with Gail Connolly, General Manager, St Georges River Council, was honoured to collect a cheque for $2043.15.
“This is a wonderful initiative of the Georges River Council Libraries and we are grateful to all the members who donated to the ILF. Please keep supporting your library and enjoy the benefits of reading” said David. “Your donation helps put books into the hands of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children living in some of the remotest areas of Australia, where there are no libraries or bookshops.”