The Friends of the Key West Library is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) organization separate from the Key West Library. For more than fifty years, we have worked closely with the library’s incredible team, raising funds and increasing awareness of the superb literary collections, including the Florida Keys History Center, and the library’s services to our island community.
The Mission of the Friends is to support, improve, and promote the Key West Library through fund-raising, volunteering, raising public awareness, and advocacy for the library.
The Key West Library is a public library funded by Monroe County. As the library is a critical resource for Key West school children and residents, the goal of the Friends is to provide supplemental support and financial resources to the library team. We work to understand the library’s needs, to seek opportunities to expand its impact with additional resources, and to provide those resources as we are able. We achieve this through volunteerism, activism, and an annual Friends grant that provides supplemental financial support for library programs and collections programs.
Last year, we provided a grant of $50,000 to the library. This grant allowed for:
- Collection Development: Print and digital library collections, language learning software, and streaming services
- Programming: Fees for performers and speakers for all ages, program supplies, promotional materials, and refreshments
- Florida History: Digitization and storage fees for rare collections with Digital Public Library of America
- Staff Development: Participation in library conferences and trainings, professional memberships.
We pride ourselves on prudent stewardship and fiscal responsibility. Our largest source of fundraising is through our member dues. All membership dues go directly to support the library. That means when you become a member, your full contribution will be used to better the Key West Library through books, programs, and services.
In addition to our membership fees, the Friends raise funds by
- running used book sales
- offering rare books for sale on our eBay site
- selling tickets to our annual gala
- offering sponsorships
- identifying major donors, and
- participating in other events and partnership opportunities that become available.
In addition to fundraising, Friends contribute to the library by volunteering time. Friends collect and sort books for our Book Sales, staff the Speaker Series and Annual Gala, and help with library programs as requested. To find out more, visit our volunteer page by clicking here.
Board of Directors
Our board of directors consists of volunteers elected to three year terms. Each of our board members brings a love for the library and a vast array of professional experience. Composed of people who feel a strong commitment to serve the mission of the Friends, members of our board lean on their expertise and passion to guide the organization toward fulfilling its mission. Board members participate in monthly board meetings, and chair and serve on committees. To inquire about joining the board or any other volunteer position, click here. To learn more about each of our current board members please click here.