Our love of books has us browsing libraries, book stores, story times and now – our newest favourite book nook – the Children’s Book Bank.
In an old Victorian home turned storefront in the Regent Park/Cabbagetown neighbourhood, the “book bank’ collects gently-used children’s books and distributes them free of charge to children who may not have the chance to own their own.
A visit offers a great lesson in giving and together we chose a bag full of our own to give away. But the Children’s Book Bank is not just a drop-off. This cozy and welcoming “library” is open daily to the public. Donate books, join a story time in action or simply peruse their collection.
The rule is every child can leave with a book. My five-year-old was excited to keep a book forever rather than the typical library experience. His choice? Well, although the helpful staff pulled out a stack of volcano-themed books upon his request, he ended up choosing one about the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. (Guess what we were reading all summer.)
Getting there: Driving, there is free residential parking in the hood. Paid street parking along Gerrard and Parliament ranges from $1.50 to $2.25/hr. On TTC, the nearest stop is likely Gerrard St. and Parliament. On the 65 Parliament bus (it starts at Castle Frank Subway), get off at Gerrard and walk west. The 506 Carlton streetcar also stops at this intersection. Open daily with these hours.
Other ways to give: In addition to donating children’s books and dictionaries, you can give straight up financial donations, or host an event like a book drive or donation through ECHOage as part of your child’s birthday.