Feature Story                                                                                                 Monday, November 26, 2012


The Gilded LiLi

Fraser Valley Regional Library mobile outreach vehicle is rockin', rollin' and readin' on a corner near you soon

Staff/Voice photos


Smitty Miller, LiLi driver, set up shop for some multimedia fun at Williams and Bole Wednesday.


hen you think of a gilded lily, you think of a veneer of gold over a flower, a term with it's origins in Shakespeare's King John.


The Fraser Valley Regional Library's "Library Live and on Tour" vehicle, dubbed LiLi, is gilded — but with a rocking sound and multimedia system that would have even made Shakespeare jealous.


It's a 2012 Nissan (game) Cube on wheels with a massive custom designed 3000 watt sound system generously donated by Clarion, a 27” LCD with xBox Kinect and LED lighting from by 360 Fabrication, Inc. and other trim items like the Niche mag wheels from Abbotsford Nissan.


On Wednesday, Lili and her driver Smitty Miller, were hosted by the Chilliwack Learning Community Society at Williams and Bole.


Debbie Denault is the Literacy Outreach Coordinator, Chilliwack Learning Community Society (CLCS) and she took a moment at the event to speak with The Voice about what was going on.


Denault wasn't sure about how many kids they expected to show up because it was their inaugural Open House and Outreach.


The room was lined with tables loaded with brochures and displays about the different literacy programs available to residents in the community.


"We have books to give away. We have lots of material and refreshments," she said.


Denault says the CLCS have programs for all ages, and one of the important ones is the Volunteer Tutor Program.


"We have trained volunteers from the community to be tutors and then they work with adults in the community who have less than a grade 12 education," she said. "That helps people in a one-to-one or small group way to improve their reading, writing, English, math and computers"


According to Denault, the CLCS have over 100 people a year taking advantage of the learning service every year and between 40-50 people volunteering their services weekly.



Miller is the tour manager and has been driving LiLi since April and that’s all she does.


“I travel up and down the valley to municipalities that the Fraser Valley Regional Library serve and I take the car to deliver services to marginalized people and I also support community agencies and that's why I'm here for their Open House.”


"In the warmer months I go to events like parades and fairs and festivals," Miller said. "But in the winter time I spend most of my time at food banks, transition houses, soup kitchens."


Some of the things Miller does is issue cards to people with no fixed address and waive fines if that's an obstacle for people that use the library and she also gives away free books.


Lili serve 15 municipalities in the Fraser Valley from Hope and Boston Bar down to Tsawwassen and White Rock.


Miller says the reason they have the xBox and other gadgets is just to engage people.


“It's a bright and shiny object and so if people, who might not normally be attracted to libraries, come out and talk to me. Then we can have fun together and in that fun, start the conversations that we want to have about getting them back to the library.”


Find out where LiLi is going to be next at www.libraryliveandontour.com  


To learn more about some of the programs Chilliwack Learning Community Society offers, visit www.chilliwacklearning.com



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