Newton, NC – During the week of October 18-24, the Catawba County Library joined libraries around the country to celebrate the contributions made by their Friends of the Library groups. The national observation, now in its 15th year, draws awareness to the role that Friends play in the library’s work and encourages community members to ‘Friend Your Library.’
The Catawba County Library benefits from three Friends groups, affiliated with the Main Library in Newton, the Claremont Branch Library, and the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library. These groups feature both active volunteers and financial supporters who meaningfully enhance the library’s service to county residents.
Each year, the Friends groups host speakers and programs, raise funds through annual and ongoing book sales, create and sell seasonal gift baskets, and spearhead the availability of library conveniences like coffee, tote bags, ear buds, and flash drives. They support the Library Endowment, assist with staff recognition, and sponsor prizes for the library’s health and fitness challenges. They also advocate for the library as a group and as individuals, participating in the library’s annual Legislative Day open house and remaining active in state and regional conventions. Their belief in the value of early childhood literacy, job and career development, technology tutoring, and personal enrichment is demonstrated by their ongoing dedication and commitment.
“We are so fortunate to have Friends groups that generously support the library’s mission and vision to empower lives and build community by bringing people, information, and ideas together,” shared library director Siobhan Loendorf. “Our Summer Learning programs would not be the same without the Friends’ support. This year, their funding allowed the library to purchase Beanstack software and move Summer Learning to an online format. The Friends also sponsor professional performers and incentive prizes to keep kids engaged in learning all summer long. This past year, the Friends groups also helped the library kick off our first annual Library Giving Day by offering to match all donations dollar for dollar up to $500. It was a huge success, and we look forward to our next Library Giving Day in April.”
To learn more about becoming a Friend of the Library, please visit https://www.catawbacountync.gov/county-services/library/about/friends-of-the-library/. Application forms and other details are available online and at any library branch. A small donation of $10 is all that’s required to join the Newton or Sherrills Ford-Terrell Friends; the Claremont Friends group does not currently have a membership fee. For details about the Catawba County Library’s resources and services, call 828.465.8664, email [email protected], or visit www.catawbacountync.gov/library.