Books bring comfort, inspiration at free 'Library of Love'

Books bring comfort, inspiration at free 'Library of Love'

Church project honors Dorothy Dusablon

WOONSOCKET - A new, free library at First Assembly of God church will aim to brighten the spirits of those who browse its shelves, in memory of one woman who found solace in books throughout her brief life.

The Library of Love will include a bevy of helpful, inspirational and positive books focused, in part, on the struggles of young women. The small, free library will be open to the public, and friends and family members of the late Dorothy Dusablon are now stocking it with books in her memory.

Dusablon passed away in 2010 at the age of 29 as a result of mixing alcohol with over the counter allergy medicine, leaving behind the memory of a warm girl with a deep hesitation to share her troubles.

"Like many young people, Dorothy insisted she was OK, and she was handling her own problems in her own way, but she was lost and confused," said step-mother Carol Dusablon.

Dorothy was a member of First Assembly of God church and attended their Christian school as a child. Family members describe her as a generous and loving person, who enjoyed books including the C.S. Lewis series, The Chronicles of Narnia.

"She loved to read," said Carol.

Dorothy, who was better known as Dottie, fell away from the church during adolescence, and struggled through what Carol described as "overwhelming life issues" on her own.

"Her family could only watch as she stubbornly struggled to find her way back to a happier, healthier place in life," Carol said.

One thing never changed, however: Dorothy still enjoyed books. Carol would recommend different novels, and used books as a way to reach out to Dottie, and communicate during the troubled years. In many ways, Carol said, her step-daughter was on the mend before tragedy shocked the family.

Dorothy lost her life while trying to treat allergies, as a result of mixing just two children's allergy pills with alcohol.

"It was really hard to lose her," said Carol.

The family began looking for ways to help other young women, and to remember Dottie, and reached out to the girl's former church.

At First Assembly of God, Carol said, they found a pastor with a similar mission.

"Their focus is on young women who get to a certain age and are hard to reach, and stray from the church," she said. The church has several programs for women, and was open to the idea as a way to complement their efforts.

Carol had two huge bookshelves created, along with a memorial plaque for Dorothy, and the Library of Love was born.

The shelves will contain not only self-help books, but also positive and inspirational stories.

"This library will be filled with such books and messages that will comfort your heart; words that will hopefully offer guidance and direction to anyone that may be feeling lost and alone and needs a friend; stories that will touch your heart and offer you hope and courage to live the life you were meant to have; books that not only keep you company, but can help make a difference in your life," said Carol.

While many of the reads will be geared toward young women, the library will have books for all ages, and will be open to everyone, not just church members. Visitors will be welcomed to read in the church or borrow their finds.

Friends, family and members of the church have already donated many great reads to stock the new area, but Carol said there's still a need for new and current books. Organizers have created a wish list and the church is holding a craft fair this weekend in hopes to raise money for the purchases.

First Assembly of God at 420 Mendon Road will hold their Fall Harvest Craft Fair on Saturday, Oct. 26 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission to the event is free and refreshments will be available. The church is also accepting gently used books containing positive stories.

The library is already open for those who wish to browse, and Carol said she is still setting up a computerized borrowing system and adding more novels.

At some point, she said she hopes to expand the program to include the local women's shelter,

"When I drive through Woonsocket I see so many women who are stuck, and so alone," Carol said. "If the Library of Love helps one person out from the depths of despair or loneliness, it will have served its purpose.

For more information, contact Ellen Mulkerrins at ellenmul@comcast.net or 508-847-2403, or Carol Dusablon at cbdusablon@gmail.com or 401-255-5085.