Falmouth Education Foundation adds to library capital campaign

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FALMOUTH — The Falmouth Education Foundation has made a $50,000 donation to the town library’s capital campaign.

Whitney Bruce, head of the education foundation, recently presented Falmouth Memorial Library leaders with a $50,000 check. The money will go toward upgrades to youth spaces at the new library, according to Marsha Clark, president of the library board of trustees.

The goal of the Next Chapter capital campaign is $2.81 million for an expanded library. Another $2.81 million for the project will come from the town in a bond measure approved by voters in 2014.

The overall goal for the new building is to update the “quality, quantity and types of services offered to patrons and the larger community,” according to a library press release. At the end of 2016, the library had raised about $1.5 million of its share of the capital costs for the project.

Bruce said this week that FEF “made a large gift to the library because we believe that it is an integral part of our community and benefits so many young people (in town).”

“Children of all ages attend programs, check out books and use both the building and its resources,” she added.

Bruce also said although FEF’s mission is to “benefit our schools,” the organization also wants to offer overall support to “the youth of Falmouth, and that extends beyond the school boundaries into other community organizations, including the library.”

In accepting the donation, Clark said, “We believe the library and (education foundation) share a common mission of supporting educational programs and initiatives that will benefit Falmouth’s students.”

“This generous grant brings us closer to our goal of a modern library with a dedicated children’s wing and separate teen space,” she said.

Clark said features of the planned new youth rooms include study spaces for small group work and tutoring, a teen meeting room, a separate space for children’s programs and expanded storage for collections.

FEF “understands the library’s role in the broader education of our children,” Andrea Jackson-Darling, the library director said, while noting that “the modern library offers so much more to students than books and improved reading scores.

“We are not just a quiet place to study,” she said. The library also provides “a safe, neutral, technologically advanced and information-rich place for children to explore, learn, and grow. When school is closed, we are here.”

Kate Irish Collins can be reached at 710-2336 or kcollins@theforecaster.net. Follow Kate on Twitter: @KirishCollins.

The Falmouth Education Foundation donated $50,000 to the Falmouth Memorial Library capital campaign. From left are Whitney Bruce of the education foundation, library Director Andi Jackson-Darling, and Marsha Clark, president of the library.