Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Family Library: Tynwald pledges £100k to help charity

Children and staff in the Family Library Image copyright Family Library
Image caption The Family Library provides book and resources to all the island's primary schools

The Isle of Man government has agreed to help secure the future of a charity which supplies a "lifeline" book delivery service on the island.

The Family Library had said it would cease to exist beyond 31 July if £250,000 was not raised.

The government has now pledged £100,000 which, combined with £25,000 of donations and a match-funding donor, will mean it has the money needed.

The charity runs services on the island which Tynwald previously funded.

It took control of the services in 2012, when government funding ceased, and has been funded by online gambling firm PokerStars and that company's co-founders, the Sheinberg family.

The Family Library provides lending services, resources to the Isle of Man's primary schools and a mobile service in rural parts of the island.

Image copyright bbc
Image caption The library said many elderly borrowers said their book delivery service is a "lifeline."

Explaining the government donation, Treasury Minister Alf Cannan told the House of Keys: "Having given full consideration to the social value of the Family Library and mobile library, the Council of Ministers and Treasury have agreed a payment of £100,000 to enable the service to continue for the next 12 months."

Librarian Mary Cousins said the charity was "overwhelmed" by the news, which had come "out of the blue".

She said it was "more than we every hoped or expected".

"It's not just the funding, but the confirmation that all our services are valued in the community - it means a great deal to us and exactly why we do the work we do.

"We'd just like to thank everyone who supported us."

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