08/11/2021 - Permalink

Shropshire Libraries collaborate with The Shrewsbury Ark on BBC reading project

Related topics: Community / Housing / Leisure, culture and heritage / Partner organisations

Shropshire Libraries and The Shrewsbury Ark have come together in partnership to share their love of literature with homeless and vulnerable people in the county.

As part of the BBC Novels That Shaped Our World project, Shrewsbury Library hosted sessions with members of the homeless community to discuss how novels, stories and writing have influenced us all. Sessions also involved welcoming them into the library, highlighting library services and breaking down barriers.

The group enjoyed readings from novels and blogs, sharing their thoughts on their favourite titles, and conversation began about how reading can transform people’s lives as well as highlighting common bonds.

Shropshire Libraries and The Shrewsbury Ark reading project tweet

Shropshire Libraries and The Shrewsbury Ark reading project

Sophie, a support worker at The Shrewsbury Ark, told the group: “It made me feel less ashamed when I had book with me while begging. I could escape.”

Mirka Duxberry, one of Shropshire Council’s library development managers, explained:-

“Through the BBC Novels That Shaped Our World project we enjoyed sharing books of different genres, and opening up conversations that reinforced the value of literature in all our lives.

“Members of the group highlighted the personal impact of books, stories and reading, including family memories and the joy of ‘escaping’ into a good story.

“We were able to donate a collection of books to The Shrewsbury Ark, and we hope that it will encourage people to join the library and continue with their reading and enjoying the service we provide.”

Cecilia Motley, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for communities, culture, leisure and tourism, and transport, said:-

“We were delighted to co-host these sessions based on the BBC’s project, and the conversations that evolved demonstrate that we all share common experiences in life.

“Hopefully we have helped reignite an interest in reading and the people involved will continue to use our services.”

A video link to the project is at: – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dNQwYC1jv2w