Washington County Library Partners just handed over a check to the Washington County Library for $14,700 — and they’re already ordering the books! There are so many people to thank … but let me focus on one.
That would be the person (or, it could be a couple) who provided a $7,000 matching grant. They requested to remain anonymous — and even I don’t know for sure who it is (only our treasurer knows for sure and she isn’t telling). But I do know our donor is not a rich person. But the donor really, really believes in the mission of public libraries — and in particular, the donor really believes our county deserves the best possible library system.
That was true of ALL our donors, who contributed everything from $10 to $500. And it’s true of what I believe: Washington County has a very good library system — but it could become great. The “2012 in 2012” campaign is just one step towards that great system.
Another step came, by the way, when the county commissioners decided to find the money to reopen the libraries on Mondays. It’s not a small amount of money to open all the branches an extra day — about $260,000 — but the commissioners heard from enough people that being closed on Monday was simply not the library system we want.
So thanks to all of you — whether you sent us a check or contacted the commissioners — or both!
$14,000 — that’s the money we’ve raised for “2012 in 2012” — and library administration has told us that IS enough money to purchase 2,012 children’s books. The cost for children’s books, at the Library’s bulk discount, is anywhere from $4 to $9 per book. Do the math, and they can buy 2,012 books.
We cannot thank you enough!
That said, we’d like to raise a bit more. Why? Well, for one thing, near the top of the Library’s list of book needs is large print books for adults with vision impairments. Those books are pricey — even for the Library — around $24 each.
So for the next 3 weeks, we’re going to work hard at finding folks who are interested in “topping off” our campaign, so to speak. Every additional dollar will allow the collections manager at the Washington County Library a bit more flexibility in getting the books library patrons most need.
Oh … on Tuesday, November 20th, Partners will present our check to the Library at the county commissioners meeting (that’s a Tuesday morning at the county government center in Stillwater). You’re invited to come for the presentation!
There are thousands of people in Woodbury and Washington County who can’t read this blog — the print is too small. Besides, they’re not super comfortable with computers. Many suffer from macular degeneration — and when their eyesight becomes bad enough, they can no longer read.
That’s why there are large print books for adults. But they’re expensive. The typical large print book costs the library twice as much as any other adult fiction or nonfiction book. The Washington County Library system simply doesn’t have enough. And it doesn’t have to be that way.
That’s one of the reasons there is the “2012 in 2012” campaign. We intend to raise enough money to buy 2,012 books for our libraries this year. The most critical need are large print books for adults — and also children’s books (40% of all the material checked out is for children and teens).
The Washington County Library Partners has raised $6,000 so far. (Thank you to all who have donated.) That will be matched, dollar for dollar, by a challenge grant. But the challenge grant runs out this coming Monday, September 30th.
Can you give the gift of reading to a senior? Your gift is tax deductible — we are a 501(c)(3) charity. You can contribute now through PayPal or mail a check to Washington County Library Partners, PO Box 25434, Woodbury, MN 55125. And I would be more than happy to talk with you about this (my cell is 651-338-0299).
Thank you if you’re one of the folks who have sent a check to us in the past 2 weeks. We have just about reached the $5,000 mark in money raised. But time is running out on our matching grant. The grant — for up to $10,000 — has a September 30th deadline. I don’t want to leave money on the table or leave books off the shelves!
40% of all the materials checked out of Washington County libraries are for children. That’s one of the critical needs. The other need is LARGE PRINT books for adults (mostly seniors) who have failing eyesight or some kind of vision disability. Can you help them — before September 30th? You can contribute now through PayPal (the button is on the right) or you can send a check to Washington County Library Partners, PO Box 25434, Woodbury, MN 55125.