Here’s Why the Friends of the Hart County Library Deserve the “Fabulous Friends” Award:

I arrived in Hart County in 1998 to take on the job of Library Director.  At that time, there was a Friends of the Library group, but it was mostly moribund, its members disillusioned after dealing with the previous library administration.  A few years later, a few women, recent arrivals to the community, decided that the library was something that needed help (which it certainly did), and that they could do a lot to provide that help.

Since that day, more than fifteen years ago, we’ve come to depend on the Friends of the Hart County Library, and they haven’t let us down.

One of their early ideas was to start a bookstore in the basement of the library to organize and find homes for the better items from the immense array of books and other materials that are donated to the library every week.   From one room in the library basement, the bookstore has since grown to three well-organized rooms, manned by volunteers from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM, four days a week.

Their fundraising efforts expanded to include an annual wine & cheese event, usually with silent auction items and other donation opportunities.

The money that results from the bookstore and from the wine & cheese fundraiser goes a long way toward supporting the library’s materials collections.  The Friends of the Hart County Library give us a monthly grant of $400.00 for New York Times bestsellers, along with $63.00 per month for children and YA books.  (We have additional grants for children’s materials, so the Friends concentrate their efforts on books for adult readers.)  For a small Friends group and a small library, this is a very big help.

Each year, the Friends contribute hundreds of dollars toward the Summer Reading Program (SRP), helping us to pay for performers/entertainers to come to the library, for a public performance license so we can show movies, as well as for Summer Reading Program prizes for the kids, and – for the last few years – SRP-themed t-shirts for the library staff.  We also regularly provide the Friends with a “wish list” of items we’ll need in the upcoming months for programs or materials – and they almost never say “no”.  Just in the past few days, two members of the Friends have brought in bags of craft supplies – paid for with their own money – for our Children’s Librarian to use for her weekly storytimes and our second annual Pirate Camp program.

We’ve had several evening and weekend book-signing events in recent years, showcasing local authors.  The Friends usually provide the beverages and snacks for these evenings – and not just buying jugs of sweet tea and boxes of cookies, but actually making cookies and appetizers for the attendees.  They also have provided this service for other programs, such as our annual “Passport to Adventure” evening that celebrates National Library Week.

This past year, the Friends even helped with our Halloween fundraiser, the Edgar Allan Poe-themed “Tell-Tale Hart” gala, organized by the library staff.  We had to relocate the event to a more expensive venue this past year, and the Friends paid the rental fee, allowing us to realize more of a profit from the evening.

Speaking of acknowledging the efforts of the staff, this year the Friends gave gift cards to each member of the staff for Valentine’s Day, and each year, they bring a catered lunch to the library for the staff, to acknowledge National Library Worker Day.  Not to mention that testimonial letters from some our Friends helped Hart County Library earn its recognition as Georgia Public Library of the Year for 2016.  It’s a great working relationship between the staff and the Friends – we very definitely appreciate one another.

Respectfully –

Richard Sanders
Director – Hart County Library

Friends of the Hart County Library won the “Fabulous Friends” Award for 2018, receiving their award in April at FOGL’s Annual Spring Business Meeting & Workshop.

Notice of Annual Membership Meeting of Friends of Georgia Libraries, Inc.

Notice is hereby given, pursuant to Article V of the Bylaws (as amended on April 20, 2018), that the Annual Membership Meeting of Friends of Georgia Libraries, Inc. shall be held on Thursday, October 4, 2018, at 8:00 a.m., at the Georgia Libraries Conference, at the Columbus Convention and Trade Center, 801 Front Avenue, Columbus, GA 31901, Conference Room 203.

All members in good standing shall be eligible to vote on all matters that come before the meeting requiring a vote. Each Individual Member shall be entitled to one (1) vote. Local Friends Organizations shall have up to five (5) votes. The following business shall be conducted:

  1. Election of Directors – (a simple majority of members present is needed to elect Directors);
  2. Such other business as may properly be brought before the meeting.

– Board of Directors, Friends of Georgia Libraries

“To Lasso The Clouds” Author is Guest Speaker at Muscogee Friends Meeting

Muscogee County Friends of Libraries are pleased to welcome Dan Aldridge, President of FOGL and author of  To Lasso The Clouds, The Beginning of Aviation in Georgia as guest speaker.

Muscogee County Friends cordially invite all library lovers to hear author and library advocate Dan Aldridge speak and to attend the Muscogee County Friends of Libraries Annual Meeting. The meeting will be held on Monday, September 10th at 6 PM in the Synovus/CB&T Room at the Columbus Public Library on Macon Road and will review the past year. Light refreshments will be offered. Gabriel Lundeen, the library’s Deputy Director, will also provide an update on happenings at Muscogee libraries.

Click here for event flyer.

 

Words of Praise for Sig Hall, FOGL Best Friend Award Honoree

From Beth Ratliff, President Friends of the Fayette County Public Library:

“As a retired Air Force pilot, Sig Hall is no stranger to service to those around him. As a member of the Friends of the Fayette County Public Library, Sig Hall has been the book sale chairman for 17 years…. Under Sig’s direction, the book sale has allowed the Friends to donate around $25,000 to the Fayette County Public Library each year to help fund programs such as the Summer Reading Program…. Sig exemplifies the definition of a friend of the library. He has been a visible advocate for the Fayette County Library, its staff, and programs.”

More words of praise for Sig Hall:

“Sig is a fierce advocate for our library and his integrity and responsiveness makes our library shine. The work that he does to support our library is most deserving of recognition.” — Jessica Kuhr, Public Services Librarian

“We owe great thanks to Sig Hall for serving in this role for 17 years with grace, professionalism, expertise and service excellence.” — Gina L. Martin, Public Services Librarian

“His high level of service to the library as an advocate is of ‘Super Star’ quality. His diligence for assuring that the donated books are properly stored when given to the library is remarkable.” — Chris Snell, Library Director, Fayette County Public Library

Notice of Annual Membership Meeting

NOTICE OF ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING OF FRIENDS OF GEORGIA LIBRARIES, INC.

TO: All Members of Friends of Georgia Libraries, Inc.

Notice is hereby given, pursuant to Article V of the Bylaws, that the Annual Membership Meeting of Friends of Georgia Libraries, Inc. shall be held on Friday, April 20, 2018, at 10:30 a.m., at the Nancy Guinn Memorial Library, 864 Green Street, Conyers, GA, 30012.  All members in good standing shall be eligible to vote on all matters that come before the meeting requiring a vote. Each Individual Member shall be entitled to one (1) vote.  Local Friends Organizations shall have up to five (5) votes.  The following business shall be conducted:

  1. Election of Directors – (a simple majority of members present is needed to elect Directors);
  2. Amendment of Bylaws. The Board of Directors has recommended that the Bylaws be amended, in part, to add additional categories of membership (Article 2.1); to reduce the number of Directors from fifteen (15) to ten (10)(Article 4.1); add the Immediate Past Chair as a non-voting member of the Board of Directors (Article 4.8); change the Annual month from April to October (Article 5.2); provide for Special Membership Meetings (Article 5.3); change the officer designations of President and Vice President to Chair and Chair-Elect (Articles 6.3 and 6.4) – (Amendments to the Bylaws require a two-thirds majority vote of the members present);
  3. Such other business as may properly be brought before the meeting.

Applying for 501 (c) (3) Status for Your Friends Group

Mary Young did an amazing presentation on Structuring Your Friends Group & Applying for 501(c)(3) Status at FOGL’s Spring Workshop. Click on the image below for the PDF of her PowerPoint.
FOGL Presentation FOGL is available to provide support and will be happy to share forms and sample letters from Mary’s presentation. Of course, these materials are provided as general information only. No legal advice is being given by Friends of Georgia Libraries, Mary E. Young, LLC, or any other person or organization. And as any librarian  will tell you, you should consult with an attorney on all legal matters. That said, FOGL is here to help.

Tips on How to Start a Friends Group and Build Membership

20170428_104341smIt all starts with one member- YOU!

Loving the Library is an easy sell

Get the community involved

Meetings and events need to be fun and food helps!

Know the benefits of joining your group

  • Discounts
  • Early admission to book sale
  • Tote bags

Have a diverse board

Ask businesses to join

Be a dynamic group to attract members

Discover the talents or education or training of your members through surveys and talking to them.

Use the talents of your members

Use the FOGL and United for Libraries websites

Target library event attendees and businesses

Subscribe to other Friends Groups e-newsletters

Fundraising that works!

Sell merchandise

Own a day at your library -info on FOGL blog

Host a Murder Mystery Dinner

Silent Auctions

Summer Concert Series

New Member discounts

Invest in Certificates of Deposits

Post your sale on booksalefinder.com

Talk up your fundraiser

Sell books and other items online

Work with other groups and independent booksellers

Host contests (puzzles, art, coloring)

Organize a 5k or motorcycle ride

Have a restaurant spirit

Sell or raffle items donated from local businesses

Host a pancake breakfast with a local restaurant

Programs that you can join to bring in donations

Check out Kohl’s community service program

Amazon Smile

Kroger and Publix community programs

Georgia Give a Day

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