Press Releases

2023 Press Releases

Richmond, BC – Kids, did you read and track your progress with this year’s BC Summer Reading Club? With September just around the corner, Summer Reading Club is coming to an end and it’s time to recognize all of the successes and hard work of over 3,700 Richmond children who participated.

Everyone who participated in Summer Reading Club is eligible to receive a special completion medal. Stop by any RPL location to pick up your medal now!  But that’s not all! Get ready to celebrate with us at our annual Summer Reading Finale on Sunday September 10 from 1:30pm to 3:30pm at the Brighouse library. Join the Mayor and local dignitaries at this fun-filled, family-friendly event, which will feature hands-on literacy-themed activities and games. You will also have the chance to meet this year’s Summer Reading Club artist Jeni Chen and learn about her process for creating this year’s artwork. Children who have not already picked up their medals can also receive them at the event.

“BC Summer Reading Club inspires kids to keep reading and engaging with books all summer long,” says Kate Adams, Head of Children & Family Services. “The library is excited to invite everyone to join in the celebration of the achievements and dedication of this year’s participants.” This event is drop-in; no registration is required. For more information, visit We hope to see you there!

Richmond, BC – Richmond Public Library (RPL) is proud to be celebrating Pride Week with programs and collections designed for all ages. The library prioritizes creating safe and inclusive spaces for everyone, including our 2SLGBTQI+ community members.

“We are committed to promoting and celebrating diversity within our community,” says Caty Liu, Library Board Chair. “As advocates of free speech and intellectual freedom, ensuring safe and equitable access to library programs and services is core to who we are. Our Diversity and Inclusion Statement, adopted by the Library Board in 2019, demonstrates our accountability to creating and fostering a culture of acceptance and understanding.”

In addition to the return of Drag Queen Storytime in partnership with Hamilton Community Centre, the library is presenting a Pride Author Panel, hosted by Isabella Wang, featuring local queer Asian writers Eddy Boudel Tan, Aaron Chan and Tin Lorica. Also, interested community members can sign up to design and print their own Pride stickers using the library’s Cricut machine.  There will be storytimes featuring diverse families, a film screening of Aftersun, written and directed by queer creator Charlotte Wells and our bi-monthly Pride book club which will be reading and talking about Last Night at the Telegraph Club by Malinda Lo. Our Rainbow Collection features books that are written by and about individuals who identify as 2SLGBTQI+.

To find out more about the library’s Pride Week programs and to register, visit the library’s events calendar or call 604-231-6413.

Richmond, BC – Richmond Public Library is pleased to announce the launch of new sensory kits. Designed in consultation with local organizations that support community members with autism and other developmental needs, these kits are intended to provide tactile tools and communication supports to help ensure a more positive library visit for customers of all ages and levels of neurodiversity.

“The library is a space where everyone is welcome, but it can be overwhelming for users with sensory sensitivities.” says Shane Parmar, Coordinator of Development and Service Design. “These kits are intended to make visiting the library more accessible and comfortable for customers who may need additional support.”

The kits are for in-library use only. Two kits will be available at Brighouse library, and Cambie, Ironwood and Steveston locations will have one kit each. Each kit includes calming items like weighted animals and noise-cancelling headphones, fidget items like pop tubes and wobble discs, communication tools like visual timers and social story cards, and workbooks to support users in working through sensory needs. Items vary in size, and caregiver supervision may be necessary while using the kits.

Library customers can ask any staff member to use a sensory kit. Once provided, families may choose which items they would like to use and leave the rest for another family to enjoy. For more information or to explore the kits in greater detail, stop by any library location or visit

Richmond, BC – Warmer weather and longer days are almost here and we are ready to celebrate with you! Registration for July Summer Reading programs opens on Tuesday June 20 at 10:00am.

“The library is committed to fostering a literate community, and Summer Reading Club is a great way for people of all ages to build their own lifelong love of reading,” said Caty Liu, Richmond Public Library Board Chair. “With so many activities, contests and programs to choose from, there’s never been a better time to celebrate reading with Richmond Public Library.”,

Richmond Public Library’s annual Summer Reading Club, presented in partnership with BCLA, provides a fun way for children to maintain and improve their reading skills over the school break. This year’s theme is Journey Through Time, celebrating time travel and adventure. Stop by any library location to pick up a free reading booklet for tracking your weekly reading progress, or participate online at The library is also offering weekly prize draws and kids can write book reviews for a chance to be published by the local paper. Free programs for children kick off with a visit from HR MacMillan Space Centre’s portable Planetarium on July 4. The fun continues all summer with a poetry workshop, author readings, art programs and a visit from this year’s SRC artist Jeni Chen. For all the details, visit

Teens – there’s a Summer Reading Club just for youth aged 12-18. Participate by picking up a Bingo card at any library location. Complete the challenges and activities for a chance to win great prizes, including gift certificates for Booster Juice and EXIT the Escape Room, as well as swim and Oval passes. There will also be free programs offered throughout July and August, including Chess Club and board and video game drop-ins. As always, budding teen artists can submit their own artwork for a chance to be featured in next year’s Teen Summer Reading Club. Find out more at

Back for its second year is the Richmond Reads Summer Reading Club. From June 20 to August 31, the community is invited to read and talk about We Were Dreamers, written by Chinese Canadian author and actor, Simu Liu. Best known for his starring role in Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Liu’s powerful memoir is a raw, personal story of a family starting life in a new country, and Simu’s clashes with his parents as they reached for very different dreams. There will be a discussion group on Facebook, plenty of print and digital copies of the book available to borrow, and in-person book club chats. Plus, pick up a Summer Passport and collect stamps for a chance to win a Kobo e-reader and get ready to explore around Richmond with the return of the popular Book Search. Learn more at

We can’t wait to celebrate, connect and read with you this summer! For a full listing of what’s happening this summer, visit or call the library at 604-231-6413.

Richmond, BC – You are invited to join the conversation at Richmond Public Library’s inaugural Human Library®, which takes place on Sunday April 23 from 1:00pm to 4:00pm at the Brighouse library.

The first Human Library® event was held in Denmark in 2000, and has expanded across the globe. It has established itself as a global learning platform with an initiative to create safe spaces for dialogue between human Books and their human readers. The natural conversations that take place between Books and readers can not only help challenge prejudices and stereotypes but also contribute more broadly to unjudge someone and create greater cohesion across social, ethnic, and religious divisions.

During a Human Library® event, readers will see a variety of available Book titles and will be able to select one to “borrow” for a 20-minute reading slot. Readers and Books will then have a one-on-one conversation where Books will introduce themselves and readers will have the opportunity to ask questions.

Each city’s event is different as the Books are all local volunteers, interested in connecting with their community and sharing their story with others. Following Human Library® protocol, our shelf of incredible human Books will only be revealed on the day of the event. Community members can look forward to meeting local Richmond residents who are committed to sharing their personal stories of overcoming hardship.

One of the anticipated Book titles, who previously participated in another organization’s Human Library®, shared his thoughts about being part of RPL’s event. “I am excited to be able to do this again. To be able to share my story with others, knowing that I am not alone and to encourage others who are experiencing similar situations or struggles, allowed me to feel empowered and that I am a part of something greater.”

This is a drop-in event, and participants will be invited to borrow Books on a first-come, first served basis throughout the event until “last call” at 3:30pm. This event is most appropriate for a teen, adult, or senior audience. Learn more at

Richmond, BC – Richmond Public Library, in partnership with Gary Lewis, author of The Complete Book of Ground Covers, is pleased to offer a three-part series to inspire you this gardening season. These free talks take place April 19, May 10 and June 14, and interested participants can register for one, two or all three sessions.

In the first session, curious gardeners will learn how to make their patio, balcony and garden look beautiful with pots filled with shrubs, perennials, ground covers, and bulbs. In the second session, you’ll discover the flavours and health benefits of growing your own food, as Gary demonstrates how to grow berry bushes, edible perennials and annual vegetables in containers. The final session will highlight the functional and aesthetic uses of ground covers in the garden inspired by photos taken from Gary’s travels to gardens around the world.

Gary Lewis has a lifelong passion for plants. He holds a Master of Science degree in Botany and is the owner of local Richmond business Phoenix Perennials, which he has grown into an award-winning nursery. He is a regular speaker at professional conferences, garden shows and garden club meetings and has appeared many times on radio and television. Gary was selected as Communicator of the Year by the BC Landscape and Nursery Association and as one of Canada’s Top 10 Horticultural Professionals Under 40 by Greenhouse Canada magazine.

These talks are suitable for beginner, aspiring and experienced gardeners. Don’t miss your chance to learn valuable tips and tricks to keep your garden looking and tasting great! Register now to reserve your spot.

Looking for even more gardening advice? Stay tuned for details about Gary’s return in October with advice on using bulbs to add beauty and colour to your spring garden or containers and how to grow them.

Richmond, BC – Richmond Public Library, in partnership with the Lord’s Harvest Fellowship, is once again offering free Income Tax Clinics at the Brighouse library. Trained volunteers will help community members with low income file their income tax returns.  This year’s clinics will follow a drop-off and pick-up format.

“We are always blessed and excited every year for the past twelve years that the Income Tax Clinic has been extending helping hands in preparing and filing income taxes for students, seniors, new immigrants and people with modest income,” said Pastor Abe Lagayan, representative of The Lord’s Harvest Fellowship. “We are also grateful that we are able to continue our partnership with the library in providing this vital service to community!”

To qualify for this free service, single persons must have a maximum income of $35,000 and a couple must have a maximum income of $45,000 plus $2,500 per child.  Couples will need to sign up for one appointment time for each person.

Interested participants can register now for a session by calling 604-231-6413 or visiting the Brighouse library 2nd floor Ask Me desk. A piece of government issued ID and all relevant tax slips such as T4, T5 and Canada Child Benefit slips must be brought to the appointment.  All print documents will be returned to the participant at their pick-up time.

The clinics are offered in English and run on Saturdays from March 4 to April 29 (no sessions on April 8) with drop-off appointments offered between 10:30am and 3:30pm. Drop-off appointments on March 4 will be between 12:30pm and 3:30pm.

Richmond, BC – Libraries across Canada recognize Freedom to Read Week every February, but we strive year-round to protect your right to freely choose what you read. During Freedom to Read Week, libraries focus on raising awareness about the impacts of censorship and informing the community about how and why books are challenged.

Hundreds of mainstream and little-known books, movies, magazines and more have been challenged in Canada over the last 40 years. During that same time, Richmond Public Library has received, reviewed and resolved 117 customer challenges, including five last year.

“Intellectual freedom and the right to choose what you read, listen to and watch is fundamental to what Richmond Public Library stands for,” says Wendy Jang, Coordinator of Collections and Customer Service Delivery. “Our collection of over 420,000 digital and physical items covers a wide range of ideas and viewpoints that inspire curiosity, enhance creativity and help to build a more informed society.”

The City of Richmond stands with the library in support of intellectual freedom. The Mayor has signed a proclamation endorsing Freedom to Read Week, available on our website at and on display at all RPL branches.

There are many ways to celebrate your freedom to read at Richmond Public Library. Visit our online collection of some of the most popular challenged books at Or, visit one of our library locations in-person to browse our displays of banned and challenged books, or take part in a book club where you can share your ideas, broaden your horizons and gain different perspectives. Plus, be sure to try the library’s Your Next Great Read service, where a librarian will personally make book suggestions based on your reading interests.

To learn more about Freedom to Read Week, visit

Richmond, BC – Together with Mary Wilson, community advocate and winner of the 2022 Richmond Arts Award for Cultural Leadership, Richmond Public Library is offering a rich variety of Black History Month programs and activities for all ages, including:

  • Film screenings of Black-centred stories, including award-winning features and Canadian documentaries
  • A special edition of the Each One, Teach One book club to talk about local author Chelene Knight’s adult fiction novel Junie, set in 1930’s Hogan’s Alley
  • A community table hosted by Mary Wilson, where she will be welcoming questions and conversation from community members of all ages
  • Guest readers at children’s Storytimes throughout February
  • A Family Trivia Challenge to test your knowledge of important Black Canadians and historical events, with prize draws at the end of the month
  • A discussion led by Dr. Carmencita Lake about different circumstances that led people of African descent to Canada, and the challenges they faced upon arrival
  • This year, we are expanding to offer featured Black History Month programs at Ironwood library and we are pleased to welcome Canadian children’s author Erica London at an in-person author event

“This year’s theme is Black Resistance and Resilience,” said Mary Wilson. “Join us to learn about Black heroes, past and present, and their contributions to Canada. I invite the community to come together, participate in thought and be curious to learn more.”

Visit the library’s events calendar to browse a list of all Black History Month programs.

If you are looking for more reading options this month, be sure to explore these Black History Month book lists, thoughtfully selected by library staff:

Richmond, BC – At their most recent meeting, the Richmond Public Library Board elected Caty Liu as Board Chair and Sherine Merhi as Vice-Chair. Returning Board members also include: Jordan Oye, Chaslynn Gillanders, Denise Hui, Nabeel Abrahani and Rachel Ling.

The Library Board also welcomes Councillor Chak Au as the new City Council representative to the Richmond Public Library Board. The Board thanks former Councillor Linda McPhail for her five years as an engaged and supportive Council Representative.

New to the Board for 2023 is Yvonne Yong, recently appointed by Richmond City Council for a two-year term. Yong is an experienced HR professional, parent and library supporter who believes strongly in the value of public library services.

The Richmond Public Library Board would like to thank outgoing Board Trustee Diane Cousar for her years of dedication and service to the public library and community.

Newly elected Board Chair Caty Liu says “With this being a Strategic Planning year, the Board is looking forward to engaging with the community throughout the year to hear their thoughts and create a vision and plan that prioritizes literacy and serves our community as it continues to grow and rebuild. At this time, I would also like to thank City Council and of course the Friends of the Richmond Library for continuing to support library programs, services and collections.”

Richmond, BC – RPL welcomes the Year of the Rabbit! This year’s event at the Brighouse library will be a cross-cultural community celebration that honours traditions, highlights cultural experiences and welcomes people of all ages.

On Friday, February 3 from 3:30pm to 6:30pm, stop by the Brighouse library for an afternoon of Chinese song, dance, art, crafts and traditional experiences.

Youth and the young at heart will delight in the dance exhibitions that include a K-Pop demonstration, a Lion Dance and Chinese folk dances. Children will be captivated by the Monkey King puppet show and the Han-style costumes showcased in the costume show. There will also be a choir performance of traditional Chinese New Year folk songs by a local seniors’ choir. For those looking to try their hand at some traditional Chinese activities, there will be Chinese calligraphy stations, ink painting, and a compass fortune-telling workshop.

RPL would like to thank the event partners and sponsors whose contributions have helped to make this celebration possible. Thank you to Big Bear Education, CLF Kong Fu Club, Chinese Couplets Study Club, E Show Dance, Richmond Chinese Senior Group, Richmond Family Place Society, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. Richmond Chinese Women’s Club, Touchstone Family Association, and VISM Education Group.

This event is free to attend and no registration is required. To learn more, visit See you there and 恭喜發財!

Richmond, BC – Richmond Public Library, together BCNET and CANARIE, has launched eduroam, the secure, global Wi-Fi service for the higher education and research community, at all RPL locations. With this new service, staff, students, faculty and researchers from any participating Canadian or international post-secondary institution can now automatically connect to the internet at the library. The eduroam service securely connects participating customers to the library’s internet connection, that is powered by City of Richmond’s network infrastructure, using the username and password from their home institutions.

RPL locations are extremely well utilized by students of all ages to study, do research, and work on group or individual projects. In addition, Richmond is a travel destination and a connecting hub, welcoming newcomers and students from around the world. The ability for Canadian and international post-secondary students to use eduroam to stay connected to their institution’s online resources while on the go provides vital access to the internet and improved access to online learning.

Students and faculty at eduroam-equipped institutions can quickly and easily access the service at the library. It should seamlessly connect without any action required. RPL joins over 194 locations in BC and 626 sites across Canada that offer eduroam.

“Our libraries are popular go-to destinations for local students,” said Charles Leung, Manager of Information Technology at Richmond Public Library. “Enabling eduroam at RPL will enhance our in-library experience. We are always seeking out meaningful initiatives and partnerships such as this one, where we can inspire learning.”

“The library offers seamless connectivity to this world-wide roaming service, supporting Wi-Fi access for education and research, anytime and anywhere,” said Clarence Lee, Director of Client Services and Communications at BCNET. “As more libraries join eduroam, we are enabling broader internet access and bridging the digital divide.”

“Students, staff, and faculty with eduroam access can securely learn and work from wherever, whenever – including now at RPL,” said Christina Colangelo, Program Manager, Identity and Access Management at CANARIE. “We’re pleased to work with BCNET and the library to expand eduroam access at more public places – supporting smart cities initiatives across Canada.”