Southern Oregon

KOBI Spirit of Community Moment: Oregon Library Innovation Fund

KOBI: This morning, the Oregon Community Foundation supports libraries throughout the state. Now we're heading to the Grants Pass branch of the Josephine Community Library where you'll see how the Library Innovation Fund is helping people in our community to learn, connect and grow. Here's another Spirit of Community Moment.

Rebecca Stoltz: I think one of the biggest reasons people come into the library is to connect in one way or another. We really are the place for people to come together and have a meeting, have lunch, attend a couple programs or volunteer.

KOBI: Rebecca Stoltz is the Executive Director of the Josephine County Library Fund. She's witnessed the library's extraordinary growth.

RS: So, one of my favorite statistics that I always like to share is that in any given day there are 10,000 items checked out in our community.

Kate Lasky: We feel like we have more foot traffic in the library than you see in the local post office. Kate Laskey is the Director of the Josephine Community Library. She's seen how funding from Oregon Community Foundation helped modernize her library.

KL: It's changed incredibly, in fact and when we visit our children's library today, you'll see that Oregon Community Foundation helped renovate that space and bring it into the 21st century. So, you'll see some computers, computer games that are accessible and they're vetted wonderful games for kids. So, you can check out a sewing machine, you can check out a guitar.

KOBI: She knows the library could never meet the demand if not for the volunteers.

KL: We have about 200 volunteers, individuals, a month who work around 150 to 200 hours a week at our library system, and our volunteers make our library possible.

KOBI: Many of the volunteers like Steve Roe of Roe Motors bring their dogs to story time.

Steve Roe: There's something special I think about a child learning to read with a dog at the same time, it makes a little bit more fun.

KOBI: With funding from Oregon Community Foundation dozens of libraries across the state are experiencing the same remarkable success as the Josephine Community Library.

RS: So, I've been with the library for 10 years now and my favorite part is the service that we provide in connecting in the community. We just love Oregon Community Foundation and they're supported the libraries over the years. They've made a huge impact in our community, in our library, in Josephine County.

KOBI: If you’d like to help make Southern Oregon a better place to live, visit Oregon Community Foundation at oregoncf.org.

This from KOBI TV's "Oregon Community Foundation: Spirit of Community" series.