Coastal Community Tool Library grant helps Gabriola build community

Gabriola Tool Library and Coastal Community Credit Union

Press Release

Tuesday, July 24 2018

The Gabriola Tool Library Association (GTLA) is one step closer to helping Gabriola residents Reduce, Re-use and Recycle when they take on do-it-yourself projects and repairs. The association just received a $3,650 Building Healthier Communities Fund grant from Coastal Community to help install electricity in a tool library building, create a covered space for the public to meet and exchange advice, and buy insurance for the tool library’s first year of operation.


In Front Of The Tool Library At The Commons
(L-R): Brittany Moody (Member Representative, CCCU, Gabriola Branch), Diane Streeter, Patricia Ludwick, Justine Pearson, and Kim Kasanian of the Gabriola Tool Library, and Shawna McPhillips (Area Manager for CCCU). Submitted photo


The GTLA drew on the support and advice of the tool libraries in Victoria and Vancouver to help develop the project. Fundraising began in November 2017, and close to 400 tools have been donated to date, with more expected as soon as the Tool Library opens its doors to the public in the next couple of months.

“The Gabriola community has been extremely supportive of our endeavour to create a tool lending library, donating tools, skills, and expertise to take this small step towards creating a resilient and sustainable society,” said Patricia Ludwick, who serves on the GTLA’s Board of Directors. “We are grateful to Coastal Community Credit Union, who have recently joined other community sponsors of the project, including the Gabriola Lions, Village Foods, Mid-Island Co-op and many individuals who have volunteered their time and energy to build and equip our lovely little shed. We hope, with this last leg up, we will soon be able to provide access to the tools donated to the community, and to promote opportunities to share expertise in the use of them.”

The Gabriola Tool Library initiative began in the fall of 2016. Part of a wider movement rapidly growing across Canada, a tool library is an innovative approach to environmental sustainability. Members are able to check out donated tools for a wide variety of projects, keeping those tools out of landfills and reducing the need for individuals to own them. Located close to the heart of the village, the Gabriola Tool Library will have the added effect of building community, as members share expertise through workshops, mentorships and very popular Fix-It-Fairs, where neighbours help their fellow Islanders fix common household items for free. 

“Tool libraries are a wonderful way to increase community involvement and cohesion,” said Allyson Prescesky, Senior Manager, Community and Communications, with Coastal Community. “We’re proud to support an initiative based on neighbours sharing resources and expertise to help their community thrive.” 

Since 2014, BHCF has given hundreds of thousands of dollars in seed money to help dozens of local organizations fund long-term initiatives that contribute to building healthier Island communities. BHCF looks for projects that support a broad range of people, are sustainable and make a difference to a local community. 

For more information on our Building Healthier Communities fund, please visit