To commemorate the 150th anniversary of Canada, Vancouver Island Regional Library launched an oral history project called “Tell Us Your Story” which aimed to tap into our rich tapestry and celebrate our unique stories and histories.
VIRL staff collected 133 stories between July 1st and November 11th of 2017. The stories were collected at some of our 39 libraries as far South as Sidney and as far North as Massett on Haida Gwaii. Stories were also collected at our Mobile Library events up and down the island. It was important that we gave people from all 39 communities that we serve the opportunity to have their stories heard as well! Every branch in the system received its own digital recorder. The recorders were made possible in part by a Canada 150 Grant from the Nanaimo Foundation.
The resulting collection is as diverse as we and our communities are. There are amazing emigration stories, hopes for the future, reminders of those who were here first and even stories about patriotic tattoos.