By Virginia Volkman, Library Director
Sedona AZ (July 3, 2015) – Sedona Public Library’s 2015 fiscal year ended May 31. During this time we experienced another year of growth and change. The Library continues to be an outstanding community resource by providing new and innovative services and programs in an efficient and cost-effective manner.
We’re proud of the following accomplishments during the year:
· Sedona Public Library was nationally recognized by “Library Journal” magazine as a Star Rated Library. Only four libraries in the state of Arizona received this distinction, based on statistical measures that were higher than those of similar-sized libraries.
· The Culture Pass Program was launched, giving library cardholders free admission to museums and cultural institutions across the state. Since its rollout in January, we have issued 300 admission passes. Sedona is the only library in Northern Arizona to offer this service.
· Thanks to generous funding from the Kemper and Ethel Marley Foundation, Sedona Public Library now has a SMART Board available for classes, meetings, and other programming. The interactive whiteboard allows users to utilize video conferencing, stream presentations from anywhere in the world, and engage users in real-time discussions via smartphones and tablets.
· Our 20-year-old building received an upgrade last summer when we installed a new roof.
· In an effort to increase awareness of our services, SPL launched “Check It Out,” the official magazine of Sedona Public Library. The magazine was mailed to over 11,000 residents of Sedona and the Village of Oak Creek. Other marketing efforts included staff appearing on two television programs and hosting a Sedona Chamber of Commerce mixer.
· We received an Arizona Community Foundation of Sedona grant to expand our early literacy tutoring program conducted with iPads. We also received an Arizona State Library mini-grant, which provided approximately $400 worth of science- and engineering-themed kits that were used for “Touching Tech” after-school programs every Thursday in September and November.
· The rearrangement of the Children’s Room, including new movable shelving and an interactive, early literacy skill-building play area, was accomplished with funding from a $9,220 LSTA grant.
· A new program was initiated through collaboration with the Oak Creek Apples Macintosh Users Group. They presented a lecture and workshop for about 50 people each month.
· We expanded services for the Latino community. We added a third group to our English as Second Language classes, which doubled the number of students; added guitar instruction; increased the number of computer classes; offered a tax forum, a visit with representatives from the Consulate of Mexico, and an immigration forum with immigration and family law attorney Daniel A. Rodriguez. We also started offering bi-weekly immigration consultation services.
· Youth Services reached out to the community by visiting Head Start classes, the YMCA after-school program, and several preschools. Staff participated in events at Big Park Community School, Sedona Charter School, and West Sedona School, and made class visits. Outreach to teens was also emphasized, with staff visits to six classes of 9th and 10th grade students at the high school and promotion of the Library at meetings of the National Honor Society, Key Club, and Student Council. Through these and other programs, we directly informed approximately 330 young people, aged 12 to 17, about library services and teen opportunities at the Library.
· Sedona Public Library in the Village expanded its space by relocating to a new suite in Tequa Plaza. In response to comments from a survey, we doubled the number of Arizona Humanities programs offered in the Village, from 6 to 12 per year. We initiated an every-other-month book share at Sedona Winds. Expansion of outreach services included presentations to several book clubs and to the Kachina Retired Teachers Association.
· The Library Board completed a comprehensive review of policies.
In addition to implementing new services, Sedona Public Library strengthened ongoing services in FY 2015. Staff, board members, and volunteers continue to bring new ideas to our operation and attract new audiences. Volunteers contributed approximately 17,000 hours of service to the Library last year. Through the involvement and commitment of our community, Sedona Public Library continues to be a successful private/public collaboration.
Sedona Public Library is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation. The land on which our beautiful library sits was donated, and the library building was constructed with private funds and is entirely debt-free. Donations and grants allow us to continue to offer free and innovative services to residents and visitors. Your tax-deductible donation is appreciated and may be sent to: Sedona Public Library, 3250 White Bear Road, Sedona, AZ 86336.