Focus on Friends - Friends of North Regional/BC Library
Shortly after North Regional/BC Library opened in 1994, a vital new Friends group was formed. It grew rapidly, and boasts a membership of over 200 each year for the past fifteen years.
This active group sponsors three ongoing projects - an award-winning Friends Tutoring Program for elementary school children, the Friends' Fancy Gift Shop and an ongoing Book Fair. The Friends also serve an advocacy role, helping obtain public support and funding for Broward County Library, and they help enhance library programs and services, as well as staff development, through their fund raising activities.
The goal of the Friends of the Library Tutoring Program is to improve the reading skills of elementary school children. The tutors, who range in age from high school students to senior citizens, emphasize the use of library materials and technology during the sessions. The success of this program led to an Acts of Caring Award from the National Association of Counties.
The Friends' Fancy Gift Shop, which opened in 1995, is staffed with volunteers who sell small gifts, greeting cards, coffee, snacks and bottled water. Other volunteers work with donated books which are presented to the public in the Friends Book Nook at the library in exchange for a donation to the Friends.
In the role of library advocates, the Friends send staff to professional conferences, participate in initiatives of the Broward County Friends, contact legislators as needed, and send community leaders to Library Day in Tallahassee. They also advocate by supporting the printing of publicity materials and computer class handouts to promote and enhance library services and programs.
Special events hosted by the Friends group include volunteer and staff recognition programs.
The group purchased a baby grand piano for the library auditorium, allowing for high-quality music programs for all ages. Other activities supported by the Friends include the summer-long Florida Library Youth Program, adult programming, and a highly-acclaimed Friends Program Series.
At the 2013 Friends of the Library Luncheon and Awards, the group won an award for "Support of Youth Programming” for their contributions to bringing educational apps to children through the use of iPads.
For more information about the Friends of North Regional/BC Library, call 954-201-2606.
Remember: Good Friends make Great Libraries!