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Helsinki libraries to home-deliver books to risk groups

Published : 04 Jun 2020, 02:24

Updated : 04 Jun 2020, 09:52

  DF Report

Press Release Photo City of Helsinki by Paula Virta.

The Helsinki City Library Network is carrying out a ‘Summer Reading to Your Door’ campaign in June, delivering books to home-bound risk group members in the city to read during the coronavirus crisis.

Helsinki Helpline volunteers will transport some of the readymade book bags to the front doors of homebound residents, along with deliveries of food and medicine, said the City of Helsinki in a press release.

The city’s libraries have kick-started a campaign for book supply.

At first, a balanced selection of books which are in good condition but have been taken out of circulation is collected in a bag. This bag is then made available for pickup or delivered to risk-group members, such as seniors over the age of 70, who have signed up for the service.

The campaign puts safety first. Library staff uses hand gloves while selecting and packing the books, and the bags are then sealed before they are made available.

The selection of books in each bag is determined by what kinds of books have been withdrawn from the shelves of the participating libraries. Each bag contains three to five ‘surprise books’ that recipients can gift forward after reading, as there is no obligation to return them.

Helsinki libraries are making the summer reading available in two ways. Some of the book bags will be available for pickup at participating libraries located in the districts of Pasila, Kannelmäki, Malmi, Laajasalo and Pohjois-Haaga, as well as the Rikhardinkatu library in the city centre.

The pickup service begins on Monday, 8 June and will last for a month or so, or until the stock of bags runs out.

Starting on 10 June, book bags will also be delivered to the front doors of risk-group members in the city, as a part of Helsinki Helpline’s efforts to supply the city residents who are sheltering at home with food and medicine.

Interested parties can inquire about the book bag delivery via the Helsinki Helpline service by calling 09 310 85805 on weekdays between 12:00 PM and 3:00 PM. The book bags are free-of-charge for both pickup and home delivery.