The Libri Foundation is a nationwide non-profit organization which donates new, quality, hardcover children's books to small, rural public libraries throughout the United States. Since October 1990, the Foundation has donated over $5,000,000 worth of new children's books to more than 3,000 libraries in all 50 states.
In order to encourage and reward local support of libraries, The Libri Foundation will match any amount of money raised by your local sponsors from $50 to $350 on a 2-to-1 ratio. Thus, a library can receive up to $1,050 worth of new children's books. After a library receives a grant, local sponsors (such as formal or informal Friends groups, civic or social organizations, local businesses, etc.) have four months, or longer if necessary, to raise their matching funds.
The librarian of each participating library selects the books her library will receive from a booklist provided by the Foundation. The 700-plus fiction and nonfiction titles on the booklist reflect the very best of children's literature published primarily in the last three years. These titles, which are for children ages 12 and under, are award-winners or have received starred reviews in library, literary, or education journals. The booklist also includes a selection of classic children's titles.
Libraries are qualified on an individual basis. In general, county libraries should serve a population under 16,000 and town libraries should serve a population under 10,000 (usually under 5,000). Libraries should be in a rural area, have a limited operating budget, and an active children's department.
Please note: Rural is usually considered to be at least 30 miles from a city with a population over 40,000. Town libraries with total operating budgets over $150,000 and county libraries with total operating budgets over $350,000 are rarely given grants.
Applications are accepted from independent libraries as well as libraries which are part of a county, regional, or cooperative library system.
A school library may apply only if it also serves as the public library (i.e. it is open to the everyone in the community, has some summer hours, and there is no public library in town).
A branch library may apply if the community it is in meets the definition of rural. If the branch library receives its funding from its parent institution, then the parent institution's total operating budget, not just the branch library's total operating budget, must meet the budget guidelines.
A library that received a BOOKS FOR CHILDREN grant in 2009 or earlier is eligible to apply if it fulfilled all the grant requirements, including sending in its final report.
Application deadlines for 2012 are: (postmarked by) January 23rd, and May 15th. Grants will be awarded January 31st and May 31st.
The names of grant recipients will be posted on the Foundation's website a few days after grants are awarded. Acceptance packets are usually mailed 14-18 days after grants are awarded.
If you want your books in time for your summer reading program, please apply for a January grant. May grant recipients may not receive their books until after most summer reading programs are over.
Please DO NOT waste money sending your application by Express Mail. The application deadline is based on postmark date, not arrival date.
Application guidelines and forms may be downloaded from the Foundation's website at: www.librifoundation.org.
For more information about The Libri Foundation or its Books for Children program, please contact:
Ms. Barbara J. McKillip, President, The Libri Foundation, PO Box 10246, Eugene, OR 97440. 541-747-9655 (phone); 541-747-4348 (fax); firstname.lastname@example.org (email). Normal office hours are: Monday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Pacific Time.