Organizers purchase new books for annual Wrap-A-Read program. Books will be handed out to Langley children registered with the Christmas bureau. (Langley Literacy Network Facebook)

Langley literacy group spends $11,000 on new books for kids at Christmas bureau

Bureau’s Gifts for Kids tree is no longer at Willowbrook mall

Thanks to a year-long fundraising effort by the Langley Literacy Association, more than 1,500 local children will be gifted new books this Christmas.

The literacy organization has been providing kids registered with the Langley Christmas Bureau a new book through its Wrap-A-Read program for about 15 years, according to Kailey Clarkson, a literacy outreach coordinator with the association.

READ MORE: Santa photos supply gifts for sick kids this Christmas

“It’s not just a gift or item that someone is getting, it’s a memory and an experience that they’re going to have with their kids,” she said. “To help develop that literacy at home, that bond, it’s a real privilege.”

Each year, the organization aims to raise about $11,000 to support the program. Then, in December, the group purchases the necessary books at a 40 per cent discount from United Library Services.

“We work with Fraser Valley Regional Library to buy the books, and they’re an instrumental partner in this because they know all of the books to buy, they know what’s popular and what’s out there,” Clarkson explained.

Volunteers with the literacy group will be at the Langley Christmas Bureau during its annual three-day toy distribution days – which run from Dec. 16 to 18 – where registered families will visit the bureau and shop for their children.

“So many of the families, when they receive the books, are so excited,” said Clarkson. “Parents are really excited to be able to pick books for their kids, and they put a lot of time and thought into picking the right book.”

Last year, Clarkson estimated, the organization gave away nearly 2,000 books to about 1,600 Langley children, and she expects similar numbers this year.

“We had a lot of community support this year with fundraising and volunteering, so we’re in a really good position,” she added.

READ MORE: VIDEO: A Christmas of many firsts for Langley moms

The organization welcomes donations throughout the year. Monetary donations are preferred because the organization can allocate the funds where needed, Clarkson explained.

This year’s volunteer roster is full, but those interested in getting involved in next year’s program can email kclarkson@encompass-supports.com.

.

Willowbrook Gifts for Kids tree

Long-time shoppers at Willowbrook Shopping Centre may have noticed something missing from the mall during the holiday season.

The Gifts for Kids Tree is not at the mall, again this year.

In past, the tree served as a drop-off location for donations in support of the Langley Christmas Bureau.

Due to construction last year, the Christmas bureau only had a donation bin set-up in the mall. This year, due to scheduling issues, the local charity does not have any presence at the shopping centre.

Those looking to donate can still do so directly at the Christmas bureau (120-19860 Langley Bypass), located next to buybuy BABY and Bed, Bath & Beyond in Langley.

“That’s where they have to go now. That’s the only place they take gifts and money,” said Sylvia Anderson, a volunteer at the Christmas bureau.

Langley Christmas Bureau will close for the season on Wednesday, Dec. 18 at 2 p.m.


@JotiGrewal_
joti.grewal@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

What can people still do outside during COVID-19?

A list of ideas that can still be done in order to get a little exercise and fresh air

A call for donations to fight COVID-19 in Langley and elsewhere

B.C. hasn’t run out of protective gear, but supplies are getting low

Memorial bench for Langley teen who died in park

Carson Crimeni is remembered with an anti-bullying message

VIDEO: Viral signs of the times appear on Langley sidewalks

Encouraging words during a time of crisis

Sunday Stories

Original works by Langley authors are published by Langley Advance Times every weekend

B.C. issues guidelines about distancing, reusable bags to grocery stores amid COVID-19

Hand sanitizer and markers to keep lines two metres are apart are needed, province says

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Olympics?

Put your knowledge to the test with these 12 questions

B.C. announces $3M for food banks to increase capacity during COVID-19

It is not clear how much of the money will flow towards Greater Victoria food banks

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

World COVID-19 update: U.S. expects 100,000 deaths; Oregon declares disaster

Comprehensive update of world news for Sunday, March 19.

B.C. Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

Ferry corporation says ridership down 70-80 per cent over the last week and a half

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Most Read