Peoria libraries will celebrate some of their closest friends this week.
National Friends of the Libraries Week is Oct. 15-21,
and Peoria will be celebrating the hard work and dedication of the Friends of the Peoria Public Library organization.
Friends of the Peoria Public Library is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, dedicated to inspiring a passion for literacy and learning by supporting Peoria’s libraries through financial assistance, program activities and community outreach. In 2016, the group provided $70,000 to Peoria libraries and its members volunteered 4,425 hours.
According to Nathaniel Washburn, Peoria library and cultural services manager, their contributions go beyond financial support.
“Our Friends program is second to none,” he said. “Not only do they donate money to help us provide essential services, they secure sponsorships that allow us to offer fun, educational programming. We would not be the top-notch library system that we are without Friends.”
Last year, Friends established a sponsorship with Kohl’s to provide fun, interactive programming at both libraries including pop-up crafting, Screen Free Week, the summer reading program launch party and more.
More than 90 community members contribute annually to the Friends, and/or volunteer their time with fundraising efforts, staffing kids programming and running book sales.
Friends of the Peoria Public Library key initiatives:
• Donate $1,000 each month to each library for circulating materials, purchasing laptops and other technology, funding children’s programming and summer reading efforts, and purchasing items and supplies not covered by the city budget.
• Support Recycled Reading areas in the both libraries year round.
• Promote and host book sales each year at both libraries.
• Assist library staff with author visits and other special events.
• Participate in community outreach events to promote our libraries.
• Host and/or volunteer at children’s programs at both branches.
Councilmember Vicki Hunt will join city staff in recognizing Friends of the Peoria Public Library at their membership meeting at 3 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 17.
For more information about Friends of the Peoria Public Library, including how to get involved, visit their website