Friends and Foundations Information


Friends of the Library Basics
What is a Friends group?
Group of people who support the work of the library
  • with financial contributions and fundraising
  • with volunteer service
  • act as bridge between the library and the community
  • advocate for the library

Starting Out
  • Form a steering committee with a few existing volunteers or some of your most committed and enthusiastic patrons
  • Determine the purpose & mission
  • Obtain tax-exempt 501 (c) (3) status

Membership
  • Official or Informal?
  • Fees?
  • Length of membership commitment

Structure
  • Board – separate from Library Trustees and Foundation
  • Committees

Fundraising
  • Small projects
  • One-time programs
  • Supplemental
  • Consult librarian’s wish list
  • Consult with other boards before spending money

Meetings
  • Regularly scheduled
  • Liaison to meet with other boards

Librarian’s Role
  • Communication – needs, wishes, issues
  • Keep all boards somewhat separate, particularly the membership of boards

More information
http://www.ala.org/united/friends/factsheets Friends and Foundations Fact Sheets
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p4220.pdf Applying for 501(c)(3) status
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/f1023i.pdf Forms and Instructions for IRS Form 1023
Foundations and Friends Legal Responsibilities


Library Foundation Basics

Foundation Hierarchy


Definition
A Foundation is an institution supported by an endowment.
A Library Foundation is separate from the library board, Friends group, or funding authority.

Benefits of a Foundation
●Ensures money stays with library for library purposes
●Allows donations to grow by earning interest

Purposes of a Foundation
●Endow large library projects
●Enhance library’s mission
●Ensure library’s future

Foundation relationships with other groups: Library Foundation and Library Boards
Foundation & Library boards may align with same goals & projects, or may work on separate issues.
●Development
●Long-term
●Sustainability
●Support

Library Board provides the day-to-day operational guidance
●Policies & planning
●Public funds
●Facilities
●Personnel
●Contracts
●Follows state statutes

Library Foundation and Library Friends
Library Foundation seeks:
Library Friends:
●Large donations
●Seeks membership
●Long-term investments
●Conducts small fundraising
●Long-term projects
●Supports current activities, one-time events

Library Foundation Structures

Library Foundation and Library board are the same
Library Foundation board and Library board are separate
Library Foundation and Library board are the same + there are 2-4 individuals who serve on Foundation only
●Much more work for library director
●Foundation Board has liaison member from Library Board
●Those individuals’ terms may be different from board members’ terms
●Potential for mixing roles
●Foundation Board has own director
●Those individuals’ sole focus is Foundation work
●Dual missions
●Each board has distinct mission and purpose


Resources
United for Libraries (Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations) http://www.ala.org/united/
South Dakota Community Foundation http://sdcommunityfoundation.org/
Thorsen, Jeanne. “Establishing a Library Foundation,” http://www.folusa.org/sharing/establishing-a-library-foundation.pdf