Friends of Southborough Library in danger of folding

The Friends of the Southborough Library has put out several calls for new members in recent months, but without much response, their situation has become dire. The venerable organization now stands on the brink. Without new active members to lead the group into the future, it may be forced to disband.

Read more – and find out what you can do – in this press release.

Friends of Library in Danger of Folding
Urgent Need for New Active Members and Leaders

Southborough, MA: The Friends of the Southborough Library has reached a crossroads. After 40 years, the association faces the prospect of folding unless members of the community step up to serve this cause. They need volunteers to help organize and run fundraising activities. They also need volunteers to serve on the board.

The Friends was once a thriving organization. In its heyday it was rich with active members, mostly mothers, who wanted to ensure the library was able to meet the needs of the community. Now, after years of dutiful service, most of its active membership have retired or plan to do so. Volunteers are needed for the June election, to be elected to the roles of President and Vice President.

The Friends are hoping that a call to service will bring in some fresh blood to help brainstorm both on the most useful ways to support the library and how to raise funds for that. Currently, the Friends have two annual fundraisers – the book sale in June (upcoming Sat, June 9, 9am-2pm) and the bake sale at Heritage Day.

The Friends of the Southborough Library is mainly a fundraising organization, charged with assisting the library to meet the changing needs of the community. One of its annual challenges is to raise the approximately $4,000 that pay for museum passes for library patrons. They also assist with funding programs that encourage literacy for children and young adults.

Additionally, the library frequently faces smaller needs that the Friends have been able to help with much more quickly than would be possible through town purchasing. Some recent purchases are a sign to advertise special events at the corner of Rte 30 & 85, repairs to the library website when it was hacked, shelving for new media, access to a genealogy website, and additional seating for families to read in the children’s room.

Some of extra challenges that the library faces going forward are the need to keep up with changing technology and the desire to cultivate a social area for teenagers to study. The library does have a town budget and is assisted by grants. But additional fundraising would make a big difference to the success of these projects.

Anyone who is interested in joining the Friends of the Southbrough Library or learning more can contact Library Director Jane Cain at 508-485-5031 or jcain@southboroughma.com.

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Beth Melo
10 years ago

The next Friends’ meeting is scheduled for Wed June 20, at 7:30. The situation will be discussed at the meeting and we hope to get enough support to elect a new Board. If you care about this organization’s mission and good works, please be there to give your support.

Ann
10 years ago

I have looked into joining the Friends before but the meetings on Wednesdays at 10 made it difficult because of work. With most mothers working outside the home now I wonder if this may be the issue. I have used the passes (to museums etc.) that the Friends provide to the people of Southboro. I plan on coming to the meeting, it would be a shame if the Friends had to fold.

Karen
10 years ago

The library website states the meetings are the third Wednesday of every month from 10-11am, but that page was last updated in November 2010. It appears the meeting times have changed. Are the meeting times always at the later time now?

Beth
10 years ago

In the past it always had been the Wed morning meetings. I felt the same way as Ann and wished they were at another time. Just this April, in an effort to bring in some new blood, they changed the meetings to evening to see if that helped. That’s when I joined. I didn’t realize that the website still posts the old information — I’ll let the library know.

Kathy Cook
10 years ago

I am glad to see this posting. For all readers, there are several “Friends” groups that are in the same boat as the library Friends. We need to get more Southborough residents involved in the various Friends. There are Friends of the Senior Center, Friends of Youth and Family Services, Friends of the Recreation Department and Friends of the school system (called The Southborough Education Foundation). Each Friend qualifies as a charity so contributions are deductible for federal income tax purposes. Most of the Friends don’t meet more than once a month so it is not a huge time commitment. Some of my best Southborough “friends” have been made sitting on some of these boards. Susan has in the past posted a list of the “Friends” organizations and their contact info so maybe she will again soon while we are discussing this. And if the time of the meetings is an issue, those can be changed to accomodate board member’s schedules. So please give one of the boards a try.

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