La Biblioteca (The Library)

libraryThe second largest bilingual library in Mexico began in 1954 as a lending library for children in the home of Helen Wale, a Canadian.

While the library provides the public with many services, it receives no public funding. It moved to its present location in 1958  where La Biblioteca de San Miguel de Allende now provides:

  • Support to several rural libraries
  • Free classes in art, science, music, English, and computers for children
  • 200 annual scholarships to meritorious students
  • Music, theater productions, films, and lectures
  • Free internet access to the general public.

The library also sponsors other events. It publishes Atención San Miguel, a bilingual weekly newspaper founded in 1976. Housed within the library is Cafe Santa Ana as well as a small store that sells books, calendars, magazines and the like. The weekly House and Garden tour originates from the library.

The scholarship program began by helping students complete middle- and high-school programs through financial support to cover the costs of school fees, uniforms and books. It is not unusual for children to quit school early because families are unable to pay these costs. In 2010 the Biblioteca provided 290 students with scholarships.

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