Blount County Friends of the Library is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
The Blount County Friends of the Library exists to advance the mission of the Blount County Public Library by providing financial and organizational support.
The Blount County Friends of the Library will promote the resources, services and needs of the library through advocacy, education and community support. We offer our continued commitment to help make our library the best it can be in serving our community.
Members of the Blount County Friends of the Library share a passion for libraries and desire to help their library meet the challenges of the day, as well as remain vital far into the future. The primary purpose of a Friend of the Library group is to be of service to the library through the following activities:
- Money – Friends of the Library raise funds for projects or acquisitions in excess of the general library budget.
- Services – There is no limit to the services that a dedicated volunteer group can provide.
- Public Relations – Each Friend is an advocate for the library to its community.
- Community Involvement – A Friend of the Library group is validation of the public library’s importance to its community.
- Advocacy – An informed, active citizen lobby provides the public library with its strongest allies.
How did the FOL get started?
Blount County Friends of the Library (FOL) was organized in the 1970’s to create community interest and support for building the McGhee Street Library. The FOL group then became a support group for the library staff. In 1981 the Blount County Library moved to its newly constructed McGhee Street location. Blount County outgrew the library in only 18 years, and in 1999, the county began construction of today’s spacious and beautiful building, which opened in 2002.
Our local Friends of the Library group has also grown to about 850 members. BCFOL belongs to United for Libraries (formerly Friends of Libraries U.S.A.), Tennessee and local Friends, and similar support groups. The tremendous volume of work and support offered to libraries is impressive, especially in Tennessee, as our state ranks low in governmental financial support for libraries.
Our FOL group helps the library offer an extensive range of programs and current technology that we all enjoy. Your membership directly benefits library programs and services!
What are the benefits of joining?
- Tangible support to your library
- Early entry to used book sales
- Special seating at selected programs
- Current issue of our Between Friends newsletter
- A chance to participate in a community effort with like-minded people
- A force in keeping the BCPL a vibrant, growing place with exhibits, works of art, music, and expanded collections and services.
What does it cost to join?
Individual Friend $15.00 per year
Family Friend $20.00 per year
► Membership Form
Why does the Library rely on the Friends group?
Simply put, because county and state funding is less than adequate to provide for the type of service and facility required by the residents of Blount County. The FOL works to provide needed funds to pick up the shortfall between library needs and governmental funding.
BCFOL Past President Phil Baker is recognized as an “Outstanding Volunteer” at the Friends of Tennessee Libraries annual meeting in May 2009 at Haley Farm near Clinton, TN.
Library photo credit: ©Epantha via Fotolia.