Last week I mentioned little Christmas miracles and how good things were just dropping into my lap (or so it seems). This week I have another great story.
This past July I received a letter out of the blue from the Dorothy Louise Kyler Foundation in Ohio. They explained that they gave grants up to $5,000 for children’s materials – books, audio books or DVDs. They like to help libraries expand their children’s collections. If I was interested in receiving a grant, all I had to do was write an impact statement and send it along with a picture of the library to the Foundation.
How easy was this, right?
But I can be suspicious by nature and so I Googled them to make sure they were a real charitable foundation. They were. This suddenly sounded better. I wrote an impact statement. I told them a little bit about Pocahontas County, our beauty, our relative isolation, the library’s funding concerns. Many libraries have levies that cover operating budgets, but we don’t. We rely mostly on the Hotel Occupancy Taxes collected and distributed by our County Commission. As long as we have a good ski season, we’re usually okay, although we still have to do a good bit of fundraising to cover the operating costs of five libraries.
I asked for the full amount of $5,000, stating that each branch would receive $1,000 for children’s materials. I printed out pictures of each branch, mailed the whole batch off, and waited. To tell the truth, I sort of forgot about the request. They said in their original correspondence that they would not make any award decisions until December.
So on December 8 when the mail came in, I received an envelope from the Dorothy Louise Kyler Foundation. That’s right—I requested a grant from these good people. But it was just a letter, and my heart sank. I thought about all the other libraries out there that are just as hard-working and deserving as PCFL, and I steeled myself to read the rejection and be a good sport.
Imagine my delight when I opened the envelope and read that PCFL had in fact received the $5,000 grant! I was to sign the letter and send it back, and then the funds would be sent out once they received it. How exciting! That $5,000 is a huge boost for our children’s collections, no doubt about that. Plus it will free up our book budget to buy more adult materials this year.
So, many thanks to Dorothy Louise Kyler and the foundation set up in her name. Our libraries appreciate this gift more than we can say.