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Library receives $1,050 book grant

By By Adrienne McKenzie
The children of Atmore can look forward to new books being placed in the Atmore Public Library very soon thanks to the Libri Foundation.
The library was recently awarded a $1,050 book grant from the Libri Foundation's Books for Children program.
Cathy McKinley, the director of the Atmore Public Library, is very excited about the grant the library received.
"We are very happy," McKinley said. "This will help us get books that we probably wouldn't have gotten this year with our budget."
The Libri Foundation was founded in 1989 and is a non-profit organization that donates new, high-quality, hardcover children's books to rural public libraries throughout the United States through the Books for Children program.
The foundation believes in the idea that if children begin to read at early ages they will continue to read throughout the rest of their lives. In order for this to happen, the children must have access to books, which "stretch their imaginations, touch their emotions and expand their horizons."
The library will select the books they wish to receive from the Foundation's booklist. Most of the books on the list have been published within the past three years. Influential individuals throughout the library and education fields have recommended all of the books on the list.
McKinley said the foundation provides the books, not the money. The books on the list vary in cost so how many new books the library will receive will depend upon the price of each book.
"The grant will provide us from between 70 to 100 books," she said. "It will provide us with the books off of the foundation's booklist, not the money, and the books range in prices."
The books that are provided due to the Books for Children program will be used for storytelling, summer reading programs, school projects and to offer children a leisurely reading period.
McKinley said that the library is attempting to update the children's department.
"We are trying to update both the fiction and non-fiction portions of the children's department," she said.
During the month of February, the Friends of the Atmore Public Library decided to donate $350 to the grant's two-to-one ratio. The Friends of the library is an organization that was established in 1986. They hold an annual drive in which they send letters to all of their friends asking if they would like to also become Friends of the library. McKinley said that the group can donate as much money as they wish.
"The Friends group can contribute as much money as they want," she said. "They help the library pay for things that it normally couldn't afford."
The main things that the Friends do for the library are to match funds for grants that the library applies for, and to provide essential items the library needs throughout the year.
"They have purchased display stands, furniture and computers for the library," McKinley said. "The furniture has not just been for the children's department but also for downstairs."
Board members of the Friends organization are Sherry Digmon, Magaline Marshall, Bess Maxwell, Mary Grissett, Myrna Monroe, Julie Johnson, Joanne Moore and Sandra Hiebert.
For more information on the Atmore Public Library please call 368-5234.