Materials Campaign Underway!

This month the Foundation took over running the annual campaign to raise money for materials at Arlington’s libraries. The campaign was originally created by the Libraries’ trustees, but changing government regulations meant that they were no longer able to run the campaign as a town appointed board. The Friends of the Robbins Library ran the campaign while the Foundation was being created.

Although individuals can donate to the Foundation or the Friends of the Robbins at any time of year, this annual campaign is specifically to raise awareness of the importance of the materials in the libraries and encourage people to consider making a donation to increase them. Recently, the Foundation received a thoughtful letter from a patron. She shared these comments about her experience with Arlington’s library materials and librarians, and the profound impact they had on her family:

‘When I was in elementary school at a school for the blind, I used to love going to the library. I enjoyed reading and was constantly nagging the librarian to give me books. When my own children were young, I desperately wanted them to develop a love of reading but dreaded taking them to the library. It seemed like a daunting place with books that I could not read myself and obviously could not read to them.

Thankfully, I was wrong. With a collection of “print/braille” books in the children’s room and children’s librarians who were always welcoming and willing to make recommendations, I never felt unwelcome. All three of my children loved the story hours. We always took out a pile of library books.’

Arlington’s Robbins and Fox Libraries contain a wide variety of materials intended to serve our entire community. Just during the last fiscal year, patrons checked out:

• Nearly 490,000 books
• More than 86,000 videos and DVDs
• Almost 57,000 compact discs and cassettes
• Over 39,000 print periodicals, e-books, audiobooks, museum passes, and other materials.

Behind every one of these items is a story like this one. There is a toddler with a pile of picture books, an adult with an eagerly awaited best seller, a family headed to a museum, and a student with research materials for a term paper.

Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to the Arlington Libraries Foundation to grow the collections of our libraries, and help create many more special, educational, and enriching moments! Every gift makes a difference. Your support is an investment in our community through continued expansion of the materials that we offer you, your family, friends, neighbors, and fellow citizens.

Gifts can be made using the mail-in form, or on our secure online donation page. Thank you for your support!

Duffy-Rodriguez Fund Established

 The Foundation was pleased to be notified of its first restricted endowed fund.

This fund established by board member Richard A. Duffy will be dedicated to the expansion of hours when the Robbins Library is not open to the public by means of the regular municipal budget. Such increased access benefits library patrons from all walks of life and needs. It has proven to be a significant part of fulfilling the mission of our libraries and has been made possible only though private giving on a year-to-year current basis.

Income from the Duffy-Rodriguez fund will stabilize expanded hours in the future, whether this be Sunday-afternoon openings in years of constrained financial cycles, or other opportunities to ‘raise the welcome flag’ at times when this would not otherwise be possible. 

“Establishing an endowed fund at the Arlington Libraries Foundation is in certain ways a gift to yourself because it ensures that a library-service that you especially value will be made available for generations to come. It’s also a meaningful opportunity to commemorate forever a special event or achievement in your life or to keep alive the memory of a family member or friend far into the future.” –Richard A. Duffy

First Meeting to Discuss the Formation of the Foundation Held

Supported by the Library Trustees, a meeting was held to create a Library Foundation

A hand-selected group of willing volunteers was assembled by the Library Trustees and Director of Libraries to help create what is to become the Arlington Libraries Foundation. These early meetings focused on the mission of the Foundation; how it would incorporate into the infrastructure of the already existing supporting organization of the Library Trustees, Friends of the Robbins and Friends of the Fox, and the legal and tax requirements of separating donated funds from the town funds. A blank book quickly filled with guidelines and parameters, which allowed the Foundation to have an official launch half a year later. Thank you to everyone who helped guide the board through this process.