Youth engagement coordinator Chloe Valentine helps Jimmie and Gale Glover donate their lightly used books. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror

Volunteer Campbell River book drive brings in hundreds of novels for seniors

Overwhelming response, says coordinator

The Volunteer Campbell River book drive got off to a great start early in the afternoon on Saturday.

At 1:30 p.m., just over an hour after the event started, volunteers had already gathered over 300 books. As Mirror staff were on site, two more drop offs occurred, each with 50-70 books to go to seniors in the Campbell River area.

“We had people even breaking down the door to get in right before noon,” said youth engagement coordinator Sarah Robinson. “In the first hour we already had about 100 books.”

By the end of the day, Robinson reported that they managed to bring in 1,021 books in total.

The goal of the event was to help seniors who are feeling isolated due to COVID-19 by giving them new reading material that would help exercise their minds during this tough time.

“It came to our attention that seniors not only are lacking physical exercise, but also exercise for their minds. It’s having quite a toll on their mental health and wellbeing,” Robinson explained. “Reading for all ages, especially seniors, has been proven to have so many benefits including helping sharpen concentration, strenghten memory and reduce stress all around.”

The team of four volunteers and two coordinators, Robinson and Chloe Valentine, were on site at the Volunteer Campbell River building all afternoon on Saturday, and were just blown away by the response to the call for reading material.

”We weren’t sure what to expect, people have been so generous, it’s really amazing to see,” Valentine said.

“Nobody has come with just five books, they all come with 60 or 70. It’s crazy,” Robinson added.

Books

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From left are volunteers Lokman Wong, Reo Hashimoto, Jenna Beaudin and Melayna Beaudin. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror

From left are youth engagement coordinator Sarah Robinson, volunteers Jenna Beaudin, Melayna Beaudin, youth engagement coordinator Chloe Valentine, volunteers Lokman Wong and Reo Hashimoto as they sort the newly donated books. Photo by Marc Kitteringham, Campbell River Mirror.

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