High $5 Fundraising Campaign Gives Libraries Local Incentive

St. Cloud, MN, February 2013:  Several branches in the Great River Regional Library (GRRL) system will feature local programming in March funded by High $5 contributions from library users.

The library system began its “High $5” March fundraising campaign in 2005 to encourage library patrons to make “entry level” donations to GRRL to help support library services. In 2011, donations stepped up when each branch was told to keep 40 percent of donated funds for local purposes. The remaining 60 percent goes to help fund library operations and collections that benefit the entire region.

Using their local portion, some branches have purchased furniture and equipment, some have added magazines, books and other items to local collections, and some are adding programs, including programs taking place in March, the High $5 donation period. Being able to use High $5 revenue locally has been appreciated across the region.

“A $5 donation doesn’t have a big impact on the pocketbook of most library patrons,” said Julie Henne, the library’s coordinator of fund development. “But if all of our cardholders stopped by in March and donated $5, it would have a huge impact. We’d be able to do a lot more.”

The library currently has approximately 130,000 cardholders. In 2012 they made more than 670,000 visits in which they checked out items. Many other visitors used library computers, attended programs, read newspapers and did research without checking out materials.

Individuals wishing to make a High $5 donation may stop by their closest GRRL branch library. The library also accepts donations online at griver.org on its Support the Library page, where patrons may indicate a branch location via an Instructions/Comments line.