Photo courtesy of Yonge Street Mission.

Popular book fair promotes literacy

Yonge Street Mission hosts 10th annual free books event

TORONTO, ON—More than 30,000 books were up for grabs during Yonge Street Mission’s 10th annual Community Book Fair, all free of charge.

More than 1,000 people attended the three-day event in mid-June.

The fair is one way of helping families and children who don’t have easy access to materials that promote literacy says Angie Draskovic, YSM president and CEO.

“There are many things that are online and tools that are available that we might take for granted because we don’t live with poverty everyday. The technology barrier is real,” she says. “This is another way to get materials into the hands of people who can’t necessarily afford them.”

The event has also helped connect people from varying backgrounds and income levels.

“We’ve found over time, as our community has changed, it has become a more mixed income environment,” says Draskovic. “It’s become an opportunity to unify the community… it’s really important to create a place where people are not marginalized or divided and that people can get to know one another.”

For more information on YSM or how to donate books, visit

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About the author

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Caitlin McKay is a writer from Toronto. She covers a variety of topics including international development, politics and religion.