Your Gift Supports Outreach & Programming to Engage Seniors
A message from Executive Director Jenni Collins
Bill S., who lives in Reedsburg, recently called to speak to a librarian at Central Library. He has bad arthritis. He mentions it because he wants to pre-warn her that he will write down the information she gives him very slowly. At the end of the call, he said, "I think this is the most valuable phone number in the world. They cut funding for everything at the state and federal level. I sure hope they don't cut yours."
Your gift to Madison Public Library Foundation supports the services needed by Bill and many area residents who use the library as an essential information resource. Will you make a donation today? Gifts from library donors are critical to our ability to serve as the central hub for all reference or “help” questions from all seven counties in our system. At the library, we receive many calls from Dane and Sauk counties, but also Columbia. We have daily callers from Mount Horeb, Verona, Baraboo, Sauk City, Reedsburg and many more communities.
How do we help people as a resource library? Imagine an older adult, living in a smaller community with a broken device/ appliance /something, and no internet. How do they find someone to service it, if anyone? How would they find out if it is still under warranty? Librarians assist older adults with this service every day. Our library helps people find the “the right number” for their need by talking to a human over the phone.
As a donor, your gift makes a big difference to the library. Funding programs for older adults and many others strengthens our community by keeping people active and engaged.
Older adults are also some of our best volunteers! They assist with voting services during elections and support tax assistance at each of our nine libraries. Residents from Oak Park Place on Madison’s east side raised $600 on Read Across America Day so the library can purchase giveaway books for children’s at-home libraries
One of the outreach efforts Madison Public Library provides is delivery service of mini-libraries to more than 34 retirement communities in Madison. Javier Huerta — Service Coordinator at Fisher Taft apartments, across from Goodman South Library — shared that many of their residents are dedicated readers. During the summer months, residents walk to the library often; when the weather is harsh, residents are grateful to utilize the library books right in their homes. Residents make book requests, and new material circulates in each month.
Readers at these sites say mini-libraries are so important. We received a letter from a resident’s daughter who wanted to make a donation. The daughter said her mother “is very grateful for the books and is an avid reader. A volunteer brings her six library books a week in her apartment.”
Liz Gade Schara, Life Enrichment Supervisor at Oakwood Village Prairie Ridge, said, “I don’t know where we would be without the public library books.” The residence is a 350-person assisted living, rehab and full-service nursing home, and has an average of 150 books checked out each month. Madison Public Library also supplies books for Oakwood’s book club, which has up to 40 residents monthly. This month, the group is reading All the Light You Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. Staff at Oakwood love the library books because it is a great opportunity to read books with the residents and engage them in stimulating conversation.
Donations to Madison Public Library Foundation help the library in so many ways — supporting purchases of books, audiobooks, eBooks and DVDs. Funds support materials in the library, as well as all of this outreach. Your gift supports programs that engage readers, writers, musicians, community activists and more — all working together to strengthen and support our city. We hope you will make a gift to the library again this year.
Thank you for being an important part of our effort to Build Better Libraries Every Day. Your gift to the foundation makes this access to the community possible, so send in your contribution now.
Jennifer J. Collins
P.S. Sustainers are donors who contribute monthly via credit card or their bank account. Would you consider becoming a Sustainer? These recurring donors typically give about 42 percent more to their charities by spreading their gift out over the year. Call Dayna at 608.266.6318 at the foundation to set this up today.
If you have a donor-advised fund through Fidelity Charitable or Schwab Charitable, you can make a gift directly to Madison Public Library Foundation through DAF Direct.