CGD 2015_Master_sm_RGBThere are a couple of questions we always get asked when Colorado Gives Day rolls around:

  1. What is Colorado Gives Day?
  2. What is the Jefferson County Library Foundation?

The first question has a simple answer: Sponsored by Community First and FirstBank, Colorado Gives Day is an annual statewide movement to celebrate and increase philanthropy in Colorado through online giving.

Of course, as JCLF is a 501(c)(3), that means you can give to us on December 8, which brings us to the second question: What is JCLF? Let’s start with what we’re not.

JCLF is not the Jefferson County Public Library, which (as we’re sure you know) is a county entity. Taxpayers keep our Library’s lights on, its doors open and its librarians paid. Where taxpayers keep everything in service at our Library, the Foundation fills in funding gaps in programming. Put simply: taxpayers pay for the building; the Foundation pays for the programs.

What programs? We’re so happy you asked. Last year, the Foundation gave:

  • $82,000 to Summer Reading
  • $10,000 to JCPL2Go tablets for public use
  • $7,000 to Children’s core digital materials
  • $6,000 to Jeffco Stories, an oral history project
  • $6,800 to Book Club Kits
  • $3,000 to Early Literacy Playscapes

In fact, in total, the Foundation gave nearly $150,000 in support of Library programs that serve children, teens and young adults in all ten of our Jeffco libraries.

Beyond funding, the Foundation is people. We are a community of library-loving fanatics. If you don’t believe us just consider our volunteer core, which is just over 700 strong. Week in and week out, volunteers work at the Foundation offices sorting, scanning, boxing and pricing the 250,000+ books that come through our doors on their way to our huge biannual Whale Sales, the proceeds of which go back to benefiting our Library programs.

It takes more than 40 volunteers to run the Whale Sales per day. In fact, once the doors to the Whale Sale close, we can say that 2,000 volunteer-hours made the Whale Sale possible.

That’s real dedication to ensuring the future of our Library. But, when we’re talking about upholding the great tradition of free and equal access to information for all citizens, it’s difficult not to get a little passionate.

It’s really that passion that defines the Foundation.

So, when it comes down to it, Colorado Gives Day (December 8) is a day to support your passion. If that happens to be the Library, then the Foundation is a great option for your charitable dollars.

So, mark your calendars and visit Community First December 8 for Colorado Gives Day and be sure to support your passion–whatever it may be. Click here to support JCLF now.

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