Celebrate 'Friends of the Library'
The Friends of the Library organization began in 1994 and will celebrate 18 years of service on Sept. 20 at 7 p.m.
Many people spend their free time in pursuits that only contribute to their personal welfare or entertainment, yet there are those that go above and beyond to better their lives and the lives of others by volunteerism.
Many do not realize that the library does not run solely on paid staff and tax dollars. Two groups of outstanding individuals donate their time and money without whom the library would be unable to function. They are the Friends of the Library and our Library volunteers.
The Friends of the Library organization began in 1994 and will celebrate 18 years of service on September 20 at 7:00 p.m. at their annual meeting. What do the Friends do?
The Friends donate their time to operate the beautiful gift shop located in the front of the building and organize the book sale held the second Saturday of every month. The shop is open six days a week and is completely staffed by unpaid volunteers.
These dedicated individuals sort all of the donations of used materials that come into the shop, prepare for the book sale, and check out customers. The sales from the gift shop and the book sale all go to benefit the library, a non-profit organization dedicated to the education, information, and entertainment of its community and patrons.
The Friends also raise money for the library through their annual membership dues, which start as low as $5.00 for an individual up to $50.00 for a business. Membership dues and sales are used for library programs, summer and winter reading clubs, magazine subscriptions, equipment, furniture, and other materials needed by the library. Since their inception on June 23, 1994 through June 30, 2012 the
"Friends of the Library have raised & donated $222,390"
Those funds supported many library programs. This year alone, the library hosted over 500 programs, not including story times, which were attended by over 10,000 people. That would not have been possible if not for the Friends organization. For the Summer Reading Club held from June to August, the Friends donated $6,955 dollars for programs, prizes, and more and their cash donation to the library thus far for the year is $18,000. The Friends of the Library also provide refreshments for many of our programs, bringing baked goods and coffee for your enjoyment.
Although the Friends are visible to the public in the library at the shop and during programs, our circulation volunteers work behind the scenes. Every weekday, Monday through Friday, these devoted individuals dutifully unpack over 50 bags and boxes every day of delivery, mostly for holds and reserves. These are also checked in by some unpaid volunteers. Circulation volunteers also check in items, and shelve movies and other audiovisual materials, as well as deliver to our homebound patrons.
Volunteerism is not limited to adult patrons. We are overwhelmed and grateful for the amount of teenagers that help out at the library. This summer teens worked a total of 818 hours at the library, and we had roughly 45 teen volunteers working in Youth Services every month. That is a huge chunk of time that teens could be involved in freer pursuits but they chose to spend their time helping the library.
If you would like to volunteer see the Friends Gift Shop or Circulation desk for membership information and volunteer opportunities. Teens should go to Children’s Place. We appreciate our volunteers very much. Each year, we host a volunteer breakfast to honor those who have given their time so selflessly.