Library

Borrow books, DVDs and more from the AIDE Canada Library. The library is free and open to everyone in Canada. Learn more



About the library 

The AIDE Canada Library is committed to providing access to resources that support people with autism and/or intellectual disability and their families to enjoy their lives and reach their potential. We aim to provide high quality information and practical help for individuals, families, and professionals. Our collections and services are evolving to meet the diverse needs of the individuals and communities we serve.


Purpose

  • To provide free access to books and other information resources that are not readily available online

  • To develop a robust collection of materials related to  autism and/or ID with an emphasis on resources that offer practical help for people with  autism and/or ID and their families

  • To reduce geographic and economic barriers to information access by providing a free nation-wide Borrow by Mail service

  • To support informed decision-making by providing access to current, evidence-informed resources

  • To promote understanding of complex or controversial topics by providing resources that reflect multiple points of view on current and historical issues

  • To reduce economic barriers to information access by providing free access to costly or hard-to-find resources

  • To provide one-on-one assistance to library users, including book recommendations, research help, and help evaluating the credibility of library materials and other resources

Collections

History

The AIDE Canada Library was founded in 2020. Our main branch is located at the Pacific Autism Family Network (PAFN) in Richmond, BC. The core of the collection at PAFN was purchased from the former AutismBC Library, which operated from the 1970s to 2019 and took many forms over the years. For most of its existence, the focus of the AutismBC Library was on resources for parents and teachers of autistic children, primarily from a behaviourist (ABA) perspective. As we update and expand the library, we aim to develop collections that represent a wide range of viewpoints, theories and practices. 


Scope

The library currently offers materials in the following formats: 

  • Books

  • Book sets (multiple books lent together)

  • Book kits (books or book sets with accompanying CDs/DVDs/USB flash drives)

  • DVDs

  • CD-ROM software


The types of material we collect include: 

  • Nonfiction 

  • Fiction and poetry by people with autism and/or intellectual disabilities or with autism and/or intellectual disability-related themes

  • Biographies of people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Autobiographies by people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Comics

  • Lesson plans and curricula

  • Self-help workbooks


Our collection covers the following subject areas:

  • Understanding autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Understanding interventions for autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Biographies and autobiographies 

  • Emotional and mental health 

  • Sensory issues

  • Behaviour

  • Communication

  • Social skills

  • Romantic relationships and sexuality

  • Life skills and independence

  • Employment

  • School and learning 

  • Movement, play, arts and recreation 

  • Parenting and family life

  • Co-occurring conditions and other disabilities


Audiences 

Our focus is on providing practical information for people with autism and/or intellectual disability and their families and caregivers. We collect resources for people with autism and/or intellectual disability, parents, siblings, partners and spouses, grandparents, extended family members, educators, practitioners, and service providers. The library is open to everyone. You don’t need to belong to one of the above categories to use the library.

Values

Person and family focus

The primary audience of the AIDE Canada Library is people with autism and/or intellectual disability and their families. We also provide a selection of resources for educators, service providers, and other professionals.

Priorities for collection development:

  • Resources that contain practical information to help people with autism and/or intellectual disability and their families to enjoy their lives and reach their potential

  • Resources that accommodate varied interests, educational levels and reading abilities

  • Resources created by people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources created by parents, siblings, partners/spouses and other relatives of people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources for parents, siblings, partners/spouses and other relatives of people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources that focus on parenting and family life, including home-based interventions and resources for teaching life skills and independence in daily living

  • Resources that focus on parenting and family life, including home-based interventions and resources for teaching life skills and independence in daily living

  • Resources for educators, service providers and other professionals that focus on understanding autism and/or intellectual disability and improving quality of services to people with autism and/or intellectual disability and their families


Inclusive communities

We recognize that knowledge, understanding, and acceptance of differences is the foundation of inclusive communities. We collect resources that promote understanding and respect for individual strengths and support needs.

Priorities for collection development: 

  • Resources that support self-determination for people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources that address systemic barriers to social inclusion, including stigma, poverty and unemployment, and underhousing

  • Resources, including lesson plans and curricula, that offer practical guidance for teaching life skills to people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources that promote understanding and acceptance of people with autism and/or intellectual disability for peers, employers, and the broader community

  • Resources that reflect the diversity of the communities we serve


Lifespan and pan-regional focus

We provide resources for people of all ages and life stages. We aim to provide locally relevant information for people across Canada, particularly underserved areas including rural, remote, and Indigenous communities. We aim to develop robust collections in both official languages.

Priorities for collection development: 

  • Resources for people with autism and/or intellectual disability across the lifespan, from early childhood to old age

  • Resources about important life journey stages and transitions (early years, diagnosis, childhood, teens, transition to adulthood, adulthood, seniors) 

  • Resources that address the needs of rural, remote, and Indigenous communities across Canada

  • French-language resources


Evidence-informed

We provide access to credible, evidence-informed information. We recognize and value a range of different types of evidence, including: 

  • Empirical knowledge derived from randomized controlled trials (RCTs) and observational studies 

  • Ecosystem knowledge derived from population-level data from studies of prevalence, environments, health care or other “systems”

  • Expert knowledge from practitioners or professional bodies

  • Experiential knowledge from people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Experiential knowledge from families/caregivers of people with autism and/or intellectual disability


Note that while we prioritize materials that meet one or more of the above criteria, not everything in our collection is backed up by evidence. We collect materials that represent a range of perspectives, including minority and controversial views. Our collection also includes older materials that may contain out-of-date information but may be valuable in other ways, such as providing insight into the history of societal attitudes toward people with autism and/or intellectual disability.

Having an item in our collection does not necessarily mean we endorse its content. If you’re unsure whether a resource is suitable to your needs, we can help! Contact library@aidecanada.ca for assistance.

Priorities for collection development: 

  • Resources based on up-to-date, peer-reviewed research 

  • Resources created by authors with relevant credentials who are well-known and respected in their field

  • Resources that contain reference lists

  • Resources that provide relatively unbiased perspectives on complex or controversial topics

  • Resources that discuss the quality of evidence for a particular autism and/or intellectual disability intervention, or offer a comparison of different autism and/or intellectual disability interventions

  • Resources created by people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources created by families/caregivers of people with autism and/or intellectual disability

  • Resources from reputable publishers who specialize in autism and/or intellectual disability


Focus on needs

We welcome input from individuals and communities. If you'd like to recommend a book or other resource, please submit a purchase request. For other questions or feedback, please contact Allison Hill at library@aidecanada.ca.


Membership

Library membership is free and open to everyone in Canada. Sign up here

Borrowing 

Holds

When you place a hold on an item, you’re requesting that it be reserved for you. You can place holds on items whether they are currently available or checked out of the library. You can also use the “Place hold” button to request items through our Borrow by Mail service. 


When you place a hold on an item that is currently checked out, we’ll send you an email when it becomes available. We’ll hold it for you at your chosen library. If you’ve selected “Ship to my address” on the hold confirmation screen, we’ll mail it to you when it becomes available. 


When you place a hold on an item that is currently available, we’ll put it aside for you and send you an email to let you know it’s ready for pickup. If you’ve requested a pickup at a branch other than the one where the item is currently located, we’ll ship the item to your preferred branch and notify you when it’s ready for pickup. If you’ve selected “Ship to my address” on the hold confirmation screen, we’ll mail it to you. 


Loan period

The loan period is the length of time you can borrow materials. The loan period for all items is 6 weeks.


For items borrowed through our Borrow by Mail service, the loan period is 6 weeks from the shipping date. Please put the items you’re returning in the mail by the due date listed in your confirmation email. 


Limits

You can check out a maximum of 10 items at one time. 


Renewals

Renewals extend the loan period of items you have checked out. You can renew your items for an additional 2 weeks beyond the regular 6 week loan period. When you renew an item the extended time is calculated from the original due date. You can’t renew an item that is on hold for another patron. 


Fines and fees

The Library is completely free of charge. Borrowing is free and we don’t charge late fees or replacement fees for lost or damaged items. Please handle library materials with care and return them on time. 


Borrow by Mail

The Library offers a Canada-wide Borrow by Mail service. We ship items throughout the country for free, return shipping included. The loan period for items borrowed by mail is 6 weeks from the shipping date. 


Requesting items by mail: 

  • Log in to your account at library.aidecanada.ca

  • Go to your account page and add your mailing address under the “your personal details” tab

  • Address changes must be manually approved by a librarian. Please allow one business day for your address to be approved. If you need it approved sooner, email library@aidecanada.ca during working hours (9am-4:30pm Monday to Friday)

  • Once your address is listed in your profile, find the item(s) you’d like to borrow and click “Place hold” 

  • On the next page, select “Ship to my address” from the “Pick up location” drop-down menu

  • Click “Request item” 

     

If you request multiple items, we’ll ship them together. 

You will receive a confirmation email when your items have shipped. 


Returning items by mail: 

  • You will receive a prepaid return shipping label with your items. If you lose this label, contact us for a replacement

  • Please save the original packaging for return shipping. The weights and dimensions must match the original shipping label

  • Please put the parcel in the mail by the due date listed on your receipt. You can drop it in a Canada Post street letter box if it fits, or take it to the post office

     

COVID-19 information

All returned books are quarantined for a minimum of 72 hours before being put back on the shelf. This is in line with current research that suggests the virus does not survive beyond 72 hours on porous surfaces such as paper, cardboard or cloth. 


For up-to-date information on COVID-19 safety with respect to library materials, see REopening Libraries, Archives and Museums (REALM).

To contact the library, please email us at:

library@aidecanada.ca

You can also call:

604-207-1980 Extension 2006

Or visit us at:

3688 Cessna Drive
Richmond, B.C.
V7B 1C7