BC Public Libraries

Fast Facts about Public Libraries in BC

  • There are 71 Public Libraries & 247 library branches in the British Columbia;
  • Public Libraries in BC are governed by locally appointed/elected Public Library Boards;
  • BC has a Library Act;
  • There are 5 types of libraries in BC: municipal libraries, regional libraries, integrated libraries, public library associations, and library federations;
  • The majority of funding for public libraries comes from local government;
  • Province of BC supports public libraries by providing funding for province-wide programs which enable resource sharing, and help ensure equity among libraries. Support is also available through the Libraries Branch, Ministry of Education.
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Province-Wide Programs

BC OneCard

After registering for a library card in your home community, you can obtain a BC OneCard decal from any other participating library in BC. You can also return materials to any participating library in BC. Contact your local library for more information.

BC Inter-Library Loan Service

Libraries in British Columbia co-operate with one another to share library resources. Each year, British Columbia’s public library users borrow over 100,000 books from libraries outside of their communities.  BC’s Interlibrary Loan Program is supported by both the Province of BC, the BC Libraries Co-op and BC ELN (for post secondary libraries).  There are two ways to take advantage of interlibrary loans:

Search OutLook Online, an online “union” catalogue for  materials available at all BC public and post-secondary libraries. Contact your local library about Interlibrary Loan Services.

If you library is a member of the BC Interlibrary Connect Zone, you can borrow from all libraries in the “zone”.  Contact your local library for more information.

BC Summer Reading Club in Public Libraries

To help school age children maintain their reading skills over summer vacation, the British Columbia Library Association (BCLA) and BC’s public libraries run a Reading Club through the summer. Children can register for free and participate in activities at their local library.  A BC artist/ illustrator is contracted to create the artwork for Club materials around an annual theme developed by a committee of BC children’s librarians.

This website is for general information about BC public libraries. If you have specific questions about library materials or library service in your area, please contact your local library.