Boomerang Bags is now sewing library bags for FOGLL

Helen Bryan and Nola Lawrence
Helen Bryan and Nola Lawrence

What began as a project to slow down and stop the habit of single use plastic bags has, for the Great Lakes at least, extended into library bags and giving children the chance to appreciate and in the future love books and reading.

A group of generous women who meet fortnightly at Tuncurry Memorial Hall to sew and create Boomerang Bags are now making library bags for Friends of the Great Lakes Library's (FOGLL) book start program.

Much of the money we raise from the sale of our bags goes back into the community, Boomerang Bags sewer, Nola Lawrence said.

The book start program is an extension of this project, she said.

Since the women began sewing the book bags earlier this year they have donated more than 50 to the FOGLL group.

Launched by former politician Ian Sinclair, and his wife Rosemary in 2006, book start has since that time distributed about 1200 library bags throughout the Great Lakes.

Much of the money we raise from the sale of our bags goes back into the community.

Nola Lawrence

Distributed to all new mums through child and family care nurses, the library bags contain a children's board book, rhyme time book and CD, literacy and numeracy cards and information about reading.

FOGLL vice-president, Helen Bryan said the literacy program had it roots in the United Kingdom before finding its way to the Great Lakes.

New parents from Gloucester and Hallidays Point also receive the library bags.

Research has show children who are read to from an early age learn more sounds, develop listening skills, extend their vocabularies, imagination, understanding of concepts, and will learn to read by themselves more easily.

"It is our obligation to see every baby born get a library bag," Helen said.

"It is a great program; we also encourage mums to get along to our regular Storytime sessions."

The bags, which cost approximately $10 each, are all made from fabric printed with favourite and popular children's characters, and stamped with the Boomerang Bags' logo.

The small group of Boomerang Bags sewers also has donated to the Cancer Council through a ladies golf day and the Riding for the Disabled through a twilight festival hosted by Discovery Parks.

With stocks of the popular Boomerang Bags running low, Nola has given a call out to anyone who would like to join her group.

The women make approximately two bags a session from recycled fabric sourced from garage sales, deceased estates and the Tuncurry 'tip'.

Nola, who moved to the area five years ago, said the group had been a great source of meeting and making new friends, while at the same time it had enabled her to contribute to her adopted community.

Contact Nola if you would like to joint the group at