MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

February 20, 2013

February is 'Love Your Library' month


— Love is certainly in the air at the library this month, as February marks not only Valentine’s Day and American Heart Month, but also “Love Your Library Month.”

It is a time to celebrate public, school, and private libraries of all types, a time to recognize the important role libraries play in the cultural and economic success of local communities and the nation as a whole.

Libraries are non-profit organizations that depend on the support of individuals, corporations, and foundations to help ensure that libraries remain free to the millions of people who visit in person or via the web each year. While government funding supports the basic operations of many libraries, most libraries must also depend on contributions from other sources.

If you have a library in your community, when’s the last time you visited?  Libraries have changed substantially since we were kids.  They still offer story time and bestselling books, but now you can find much more – public computers with internet access, eBooks, free Wi Fi and programs of interest to people of all ages, to name a few.  

Research has shown that everyone loves libraries, but no one thinks about them very much. That's where you come in. You don't have to be a public relations expert to promote your library.

You just have to talk about your library. Here are some ways to do it:

• Consider a tax-deductible gift to your library. Many libraries have memorial programs, endowments and other opportunities to support quality library services.

• Donate your time, money, and expertise to your library.

• Nominate your library as your community, school, and corporate organization's project for the year.

• Buy your library a subscription to a popular magazine.

• Honor a friend or relative’s birthday with a book for the library.

• Donate a book...or a whole shelf of books.

• Remember your library in your estate planning.

• Write a check to your library's Charitable Trust or Friends group.

• Give to the library through your company's matching program for charitable giving.

Remember a library is only as good as its supporters.  Eastern Oklahoma District Library System is made up of 15 libraries in six counties, including four in Muskogee County: Fort Gibson, Haskell, Muskogee and Warner. Let’s work together to make them the best.