Libraries need Friends – it’s just that simple.
In fact, across America many public libraries were established through the efforts of community members who understood the value of libraries to their communities and also understood that libraries needed community support to survive. Did you know that a criterion for securing a Carnegie grant was a demonstrated commitment by members of the community to raise additional funds and support for a new library? This concept hasn’t changed over the course of the past 150 years.
How do libraries benefit from Friends groups? They benefit by the expansion of their resources to serve the public. Friends extend a library’s capacity through dollar gifts, volunteer and program support, and through advocacy.
Friends are advocates by default! Friends wouldn’t be giving their time, energy and financial support to an entity they’re not willing to fight for – that entity is the library. When the case needs to be made for your library, the group most able to step up to the plate is the Friends of the Library. Every day across America, Friends are making a difference for the libraries they serve. Think about the most successful library you know and look behind the curtains. There you will almost inevitably find Friends working behind the scenes, at city hall, with the school or academic administration, and in the public at large making sure that their library is strong, relevant, and well funded!
— United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations. A Division of the American Library Association.
It’s the service and support of our Friends that give our library opportunities to reach further and provide more to our community. Thank you for joining the Friends!
–Laura Crooks, Alexander County Library Director