Dear Library Champion,
Thank you for investing in LA County Library Foundation. You're creating a brighter today, and tomorrow, with your Library!
40 Years strong - Thank you, Library Champion
Thanks to you, the Foundation is 40 years strong this year - raising funds and creating partnerships to support LA County Library and the millions of children, teens, and adults whose lives it enriches with free programs, services, and resources.
The Library is a dynamic and unifying force in Los Angeles County. And you and your Library Foundation are vital partners.
I hope you'll enjoy this look back at 2021, savoring the good you make possible with your support. You - donor, advocate, Library user - make an impact. Thank you.
Fueling literacy and engagement
Images: (above, left & right) Monica Lomeida; (top of page) LA County Library
With your support, more than 24,000 babies, toddlers, children, teens, and adults participated in Spring & Summer Discovery Program last year. That's more than double the year before.
In another turbulent year, LA County Library shone bright - a cornerstone of the community - providing tangible resources, trustworthy information, a safe place, and hope.
You, with your Library Foundation, were part of that - supporting programs and services to meet the unique needs of individuals and communities served by 86 libraries stretching across more than 3,000 square miles.
You made a difference:
Encouraging literacy and battling isolation with Spring & Summer Discovery Program
Engaging all ages - from babies and toddlers to older adults - in reading, programs, and using Library resources
Exploring nature throughout the county with virtual STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) programming, and hands-on exploration kits
Promoting cultural understanding and inclusion
Supporting students and developing lifelong learners with books, ebooks, and audiobooks, and opportunities for creating art and experiencing live opera
Engaging more people in using and supporting Library programming, resources, and services - free and welcoming to all
Image: (left) LA County Library; (right) Monica Almeida
Theatre of Hearts artist-led workshops filled up fast. And last fall, people of all ages traveled to a park near Claremont Helen Renwick Library to enjoy LA Opera's Opera Tales. Thank you to the Mellon Foundation for its generous grant.
Images: (left) P. Caddell; (center & right) LA County Library
Students turned to their Library for learning and fun. Longtime funder Edison International generously supported Nature Exploration: virtual journeys investigating careers in STEAM, county parks, and animals and plants in the community. Plus, hands-on Nature Exploration Bags created by librarians and Natural History Museum of Los Angeles staff.
Stay tuned for exciting news...more than 8,000 K-12 students entered designs for the Library's 42nd Annual Bookmark Contest. The winners will be announced soon - and you'll be able to pick up one (or more!) of these creative bookmarks from your local library. Thank you to Union Bank for sponsoring.
Image: LA County Library
LA County Library has 86 libraries, including an "overseas location" on Catalina Island (not pictured).
A huge shout out to you, Library Champion!
You reflect LA County and the beauty of our community-based Library system. You represent every Library community, from Catalina Island to the valleys to the high desert, along with other cities in California, other states, and even other countries.
Library programs and services cost a lot, and public dollars don't cover it all. That's where the Library Foundation and you come in - helping fill that gap with private funds and building deep-rooted support for your Library.
Your generous gifts reflect your love for your Library, and you make an impact:
Giving monthly to provide reliable and flexible support to meet evolving Library needs
Fueling ongoing needs and special programs with meaningful donations of cash, stocks, and gifts from donor advised funds and IRAs
Spurring giving with a matching challenge: thank you Commissioner Shih
Celebrating your birthday and the Library with a Facebook fundraiser - thank you Crystal, Diane, Geraldo, Heather, Jim, Joshua, and all you others we don't even know about (email me, I'd love to thank you!)
Donating from your paycheck
Requesting matching gifts from your employer to multiply the impact of your donation
Celebrating and sharing your Library with future generations through your Legacy gift
You're a Library Champion - a donor, an ambassador sharing news about your Library, an advocate for libraries and the value they bring to your life and your community.
Images: (left) LA County Library; (right) Monica Almeida
Library Foundation donors power programs and help revitalize Library spaces. On Giving Tuesday, Library Champions responded generously to Robbin Steif's offer to match all donations up to $10,000. You not only met Robbin's challenge match, you more than doubled it!
A couple years ago, Irene S. made a gift to celebrate her childhood library, Maywood Cesar Chavez Library. Last year, the renovated library reopened, and thanks to Irene's generous donation, young Library goers now have their own computer area. Her wish, that the library is a haven for others, as it was for her.
Thank you to Robbin, Irene, and you!
"My local library is Carson Library. Libraries have been in my life and I encourage everyone to open a book and learn something new. It is rewarding to turn the last page of a book and to know that you accomplished a task that makes you a better, more educated person."
- Jordan Y.
Thank you, too, to longtime supporter Watson Land Company. Their generous gifts provided valuable resources to Jordan and others in the Carson Library community, and beyond. Plus, after an extensive renovation, the library will reopen later this year with a sleek new, and more efficient circulation desk.
Rich B., a Library Champion and Microsoft employee, included the Library and Foundation in Microsoft's annual Give Campaign. The campaign included three other library systems, from Washington to North Dakota, and was an opportunity to share about Library resources and programs. Microsoft and its employees responded generously with donations. We're already looking forward to this year's campaign.
It's no secret that your Library develops and nurtures the workforce of today, and tomorrow. That's something Amazon appreciates. And recognizing the Library as a crucial part of the county's socioeconomic fabric, they made a generous donation to the Foundation.
Thank you to all our corporate, foundation, and employee donors!
Image: LA County Library
Your LA County Library card will take you anywhere, that's what you tell us. Check out My Library Story - and share yours.
You keep your Library Foundation tuned to the pulse of your Library and your community:
In a politically and socially tumultuous year, Robert spoke passionately about the enduring role of the Library - a space for civil discussion, a way for people to share differing points of view, seek understanding, and find reliable information.
Lacey, a monthly donor, applauded the Library's work to add more audio and ebooks, including titles for all ages about social justice and cultural understanding.
Library staff thanked Foundation donors throughout the year, and one librarian reported that new graphic novels for teens were practically "flying off the shelves."
In answer to why she and her husband give, Gauri pointed to the range of resources, beyond books and a safe place, at her local library - cooling center, vaccination site, free lunches for school kids, computers, WiFi, and more.
Jack wrote a tribute that reads in part, "The Library excels at engaging and supporting toddlers and children, youth, teens, adults, and older adults. It’s a haven for many, including homeless individuals who need access to technology, and aging customers who are vulnerable to social isolation."
And Sylvia spoke for many when she said simply, "I don't know what I'd do without the Library."
Give me a call (562.940.4189), email me, or drop me a line at the address below, and let me know why you give for your Library. I love to hear from you.
With you, the Library Foundation is going strong in 2022 - committed to helping the Library meet the unique needs of each of its 86 library communities - developing literacy, encouraging lifelong learning, and strengthening individuals and communities.
I look forward to sharing the success you make happen this year, from literacy, to STEAM and arts programming, to career readiness and youth development, to building connections (digitally and in person), and supporting the Library's four Resource Centers.
You make an impact - for a child, a teen, an adult, and for our community - today and into the future...into the Foundation's next 40 years.
Thank you, Library Champion!
Click here to read the Foundation's 2020 Impact Report