Lifeline Bookfair helps save lives

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Local bookworms rejoice! Lifeline Canberra’s July Bookfair will be back next month at Tuggeranong Southern Cross Stadium.

Whether you’re there to browse or are heading along with a specific title in mind, the three days of festivities ensure there’s time to find exactly what you’re after.

With a crowd of over 10,000 expected to grace the July Bookfair, Lifeline Canberra CEO Carrie Leeson tells Canberra Weekly the event has grown significantly in the past few years.

“It’s one of the most anticipated book fairs in Australia,” she says.

“The morning we open, we usually have about 2,000 people waiting around before we even open the doors.”

Leeson says their three annual Bookfairs form a pillar of Lifeline’s fundraising efforts, which underpins the life-saving work they do on the 24-hour crisis support line.

“We generate our own revenue through commercial operations and fundraisers, and on the fundraising side the Bookfair is our largest fundraiser,” she says.

Through this event, the team at Lifeline get a sense of what’s on the bedside table of Canberrans, namely what the flavour of the month is, be that the Fifty Shades of Grey outbreak of 2013-14 or the Marley and Me epidemic of the mid-2000s.

Shelved alongside the popular is the quirky and collectible, of which the Lifeline Bookfair has plenty.

“We’ve had hundreds of year-old medical journals come through, a lot of war journals, books that are no longer available in publication,” Leeson says.

“We’ve got a team that focus on collectibles who always price them at an absolute bargain, but in relation to what they’re selling at elsewhere, if they’re even selling.”

Lifeline Canberra’s team of tireless volunteers, who are currently sifting and sorting through the donations, will be on hand at the Bookfair to help punters find whatever it is they’re looking for.

“As we are receiving the books, we’re sorting, pricing and palletising them for the Bookfair. They come in in no particular order, and that’s how they come out,” Leeson says.

Whether you’ve got one or a thousand books to donate, you can either deliver them to Lifeline’s 24-hour warehouse out in Mitchell or call to arrange free collection.

The Lifeline Canberra July Bookfair will take place at Tuggeranong Southern Cross Stadium on 12-14 July; lifelinecanberra.org.au/bookfair

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