Educational Institutions

RICHLAND COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY FOUNDATION

  • Columbia, SC
  • www.richlandlibrary.com/foundation

Mission Statement

The Richland Library Foundation serves exclusively to support the mission of Richland Library with increased financial and stakeholder support for innovative services and programs. Our vision is that Richland Library will be the community's best source of innovative and impactful learning opportunities.

Main Programs

  1. Growing Readers
  2. Homework Support
  3. The Job Center at Richland Library
  4. Learning Centers
Service Areas

Self-reported

South Carolina

The Richland Library Foundation is a tax-exempt, private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that works to increase financial support to supplement the Richland Library's property tax funding and provide for the future growth and development of the library for the citizens of Richland County, South Carolina.

ruling year

1984

Principal Officer

Self-reported

Mrs. Melanie Huggins

Keywords

Self-reported

library, education,

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Also Known As

RIchland Library Foundation

EIN

57-0758497

 Number

1781897923

Physical Address

1431 Assembly Street

Columbia, SC 29201

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Libraries, Library Science (B70)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Growing Readers

Why now? 
One out of four children entering 1st grade in Richland County is not ready to learn at grade level. Statistics show these children will never catch up and will continue to lag behind. This is reflected in low test scores and high dropout rates. Studies have shown that children who are prepared for kindergarten tend to be successful throughout their school years.

An estimated 60 percent of children under the age of 5 are in child care. Reaching out to child care centers educates teachers and parents who may never use the library and often lack information on the importance of early literacy.
 
The centers currently served by Richland Library did not have book collections in their classrooms or provide daily storytime prior to joining the program. Reading aloud every day makes a dramatic impact on a child’s future ability to learn in school. A National Institute for Literacy study showed that kindergartners who were read to at least three times a week were almost twice as likely to score in the top 25 percent of literacy tests than children who were read to less than three times a week.

Why outreach to child care centers?
The library strives to get every child in Richland County ready for kindergarten. This is done through a strong book collection, well-trained staff and programs to support and encourage early literacy and school readiness.
 
Outreach brings the same high-quality resources to those who do not or cannot come to the library. Richland Library provides teachers and parents with the knowledge and materials needed to give their children the very best start.

What do we currently do?
Richland Library promotes school readiness and support to child care centers by:
 
• serving 42 centers with 1,466 children;
• providing book collections for all center classrooms, including those for babies;
• providing storytimes that teachers participate in (modeling best practices);
• providing programs that focus on specific skills children need to be ready for school;
• supplying classrooms with curriculum support notebooks and monthly mailings;
• offering workshops for teachers;
• providing information to parents on the importance of reading and school readiness; and
• expanding community partnerships with organizations such as United Way and others to allow expanded outreach efforts to parents and teachers outside the centers we currently serve.
 
What could we do with increased philanthropic support?
There are 300 licensed child care centers in Richland County; Richland Library currently serves 15 percent of them. The majority of the centers in Richland County serve a percentage of children who are at risk for being unprepared for school. Ideally, outreach would expand and concentrate efforts by adding more centers that lack the tools necessary to prepare their children for school. By reaching out to the centers in need, we can have a significant impact on the number of children who enter school ready to read, learn and succeed.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Infants/Babies (under age 5)

None

Budget

Program 2

Homework Support

Why now?
Only three of every five South Carolina students will graduate from high school in four years, and dropouts from the class of 2008 alone will cost our state more than $7 billion in lost wages during their lifetimes.
 
Students spend nearly 75 percent of their time outside of school, and they need academic support during the afternoon hours. Homework assistance programs have been shown to increase academic success, improve study habits and raise standardized test scores, all of which lead to higher graduation rates.
 
After-school programs are a wise investment–every dollar spent is estimated to save taxpayers three dollars. Still, opportunities for free homework assistance in our community are limited. Richland Library is uniquely poised to meet this critical need.

Why offer homework support at Richland Library?
School children are already using our libraries as a homework resource, and offering them formal assistance would enhance our existing services considerably. We have an excellent collection of materials, databases full of reference material, access to technology, and a caring and knowledgeable staff ready to share their expertise. A structured program that maximizes these resources would greatly benefit our school-age patrons.
 
Homework support is in line with Richland Library's mission and strategic goals. Additionally, offering this type of program would strengthen the library's partnerships with local schools, help foster relationships with students and parents, and contribute to the economic development of the community.

What are we currently doing?
Currently, the library offers informal homework assistance at reference desks. Library staff help children find the information they need for school projects and assist them in using our computers to complete assignments. The library also offers diverse and dynamic programming for school-age children and their parents.
 
Recently, the Sandhills location began offering an after-school program in its meeting room using a mobile laptop lab. Each week, between one and 10 students work on homework assignments under the guidance of a retired teacher/tutor. Students and parents are already reporting success stories, and the library is now recruiting additional volunteers in anticipation of increased attendance.

What could we do with increased philanthropic support?
High-quality, comprehensive homework support programs require funding. The largest costs would be recruiting and training tutors, providing students with access to technology and school supplies, promoting the program in local schools and throughout the community, and creating spaces conducive to homework assistance.
 
We know the return on an investment for after-school programs is substantial. With adequate funding, Richland Library could create a program that would have a significant impact not just on students’ academic performance, but on the quality of their lives.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Youth/Adolescents only (14 - 19 years)

None

Budget

Program 3

The Job Center at Richland Library

Why now?
Due to South Carolina’s high unemployment rate and state and local budget cuts, Richland Library’s computer usage has increased more than 30 percent in the past two years. Record numbers of citizens are turning to the library for assistance with online job applications, resume preparation and interviewing skills.

Why a Job Center in a public library?
The role of the library is evolving to meet the needs of the community. The library has always provided free computer access, print and online resources, and excellent customer service. The Job Center has added specialized job-related services for customers seeking employment in this challenging economy. These services contribute to a successful job search, impacting the economy and quality of life in Richland County.

What do we currently do?
Richland Library is promoting workforce training and development in the following ways:
• providing free public access to computers systemwide;
• providing Virtual Career Resources for online job seekers through the library’s website, offering eight categories of information on careers, employers, job types, employees, salaries, resumes, new careers and job listings;
• expanding community partnerships with companies and organizations, including the Midlands Workforce Development Board, U.S. Department of Labor, S.C. Department of Social Services, Small Business Administration, AARP, BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, SCANA and the Small Business Development Center, through which expertise is available on various job-related topics such as small business ownership, job loss, adult and continuing education services, and job searching for the 50+ employee;
• providing a variety of computer classes, taught by librarians, in an effort to strengthen the educational and technological skill levels of the local workforce; and
• providing access to specialized classes and programs, such as Small Business Ownership and You, I Lost My Job, Now What?, Dress for Success, and Military Families and Employment.

What could we do with increased philanthropic support?
Richland County’s need for job-related assistance is unmistakable. Increased philanthropic support would enable the library to:
• maintain the services of the Job Center at Main;
• create Job Centers in additional library locations, including Career Specialist and Job Readiness Trainer services, ensuring access for all county residents;
• increase training for job seekers throughout the library system; and
• provide support for the recently unemployed to accommodate the recent change by the S.C. Department of Employment and Workforce, which will require all unemployment claimants to file both their unemployment claim and resume online. Richland Library expects a significant increase in the number of customers requiring Job Center services in response to this mandate.

Category

Employment

Population(s) Served

Adults

None

Budget

Program 4

Learning Centers

The Foundation provides financial support to Richland Library for the creation of Learning Centers in five library locations, specifically, Blythewood, Northeast, North Main, Sandhills and St. Andrews. Each Learning Center will be a hybrid of two existing services that are offered on a more limited basis within the Richland Library system -- job centers and homework support centers. By day, the Learning Centers will provide the highest level of service to adult learners and job seekers, offering training in areas including resume writing, interviewing and computer skills. By afternoon and evening, the Learning Centers will transform into dedicated environments focused on homework support and technology training for students.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Adults

Youth/Adolescents only (14 - 19 years)

Budget

Service Areas

Self-reported

South Carolina

The Richland Library Foundation is a tax-exempt, private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that works to increase financial support to supplement the Richland Library's property tax funding and provide for the future growth and development of the library for the citizens of Richland County, South Carolina.

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

RICHLAND LIBRARY FOUNDATION
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

RICHLAND COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY FOUNDATION

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2014, 2013 and 2012
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Mrs. Melanie Huggins

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Mrs. Sarena Burch

SCANA

Term: July 2016 - June 2017

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

No

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

No

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

No

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?