5 Simple Ways to Make Sure Your Library Stays Around Forever

Oleg Kagan
Jan 18, 2018 · 4 min read
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Book lending is one of the ways libraries provide access to information.

Libraries in the United States receive over a billion visits every year, so there are obviously a lot of library users out there. Why, then, am I always reading about libraries fighting for their very survival? The answer, in my opinion, is that most library users do not understand that without their active support, they will eventually have no libraries left to visit. Consequently, here are five simple ways to make sure that trouble and your library never meet:

1. Visit Regularly

2. Join the Friends of the Library or the Foundation

Foundations are more hands-off groups — they also raise money, but do so on a grander scale to fund large projects. By way of example, while a Friends group may fund a $250 program, a Library Foundation would be more likely to work on a $15,000 computer upgrade or the creation of a Small Business Center (complete with potential naming rights). Consequently, if you are a successful business owner with little time on your hands but a desire to serve the community, working with a Library Foundation would be the way to go. They are well-equipped to handle large monetary or in-kind donations, and can advise about other sponsorship opportunities.

3. Send a Letter to Your Elected Officials

Want to go a step further? Organize a letter-writing tea party! It’s easy: Invite a few local library lovers, give them stamps, envelopes, pen and paper, and put on the kettle!

4. Support EveryLibrary

So what exactly does EveryLibrary do? First of all, EveryLibrary provides training and support to any library in the United States that has a referendum or measure on the ballot and asks for assistance. Second, they raise public awareness about the important roles libraries play in people’s lives (see many examples of this at the EveryLibrary Medium Magazine). Third, they help bring justice for libraries and librarians by leading mail-in and other direct action campaigns. If you want to learn more click here.

Note: I am an advisor to EveryLibrary and Contributing Editor to the EveryLibrary Magazine on Medium. I volunteer my time at these roles because I believe in EveryLibrary’s mission and feel that their work is important.

5. Spread the Word

One of the biggest challenges for libraries is getting the word out about their many services. While big companies have multi-million dollar marketing budgets, libraries do the best they can stretching every cent to serve the public. So lend a hand and spread the word!

These five steps aren’t the only things you can do to keep libraries around forever, but they’re a quick and excellent start at actively supporting the institution you love!

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Invite your friends to Like EveryLibrary on Facebook! Help get EveryLibrary to one million!

EveryLibrary

Stories about libraries and librarians around America.

Oleg Kagan

Written by

Author, editor, speaker, writing coach, and librarian. More at olegkagan.com

EveryLibrary

Stories about libraries and librarians around America. We cover the breadth of experiences that people have through their libraries, and showcase the amazing people who work there.

Oleg Kagan

Written by

Author, editor, speaker, writing coach, and librarian. More at olegkagan.com

EveryLibrary

Stories about libraries and librarians around America. We cover the breadth of experiences that people have through their libraries, and showcase the amazing people who work there.

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