The Friends of Broward County Libraries is the “umbrella” organization of 33 local chapters. The Friends organization has been instrumental in the growth of the library system since 1975. Not every library has a Friends Group; some libraries share a Friends Group
Monthly meetings of the umbrella group provide opportunities for Friends to share successful ideas and plan for the future. Advocacy efforts of board members include participation in Library Days in Tallahassee and trips to Washington while Congress is in session.
The Executive Board is comprised of officers and members at large who are recruited from local chapters. The Executive Board is available as a resource to support and guide local chapters .
The Umbrella Group brings together the leaders of local Friends chapters from each of the branch and regional libraries These Friends’ leaders work together to: Advocate for library needs at the county, state and federal levels
Support one another in the goal of maintaining and growing the benefits that libraries provide Provide opportunities through round table discussions to share successful ideas and plan new events and projects
The Friends of the Broward County Library consult with the Library Director on library policy and issues that affect the library system.
The primary Function of the Friends groups is Advocacy. We advocate creating public interest in libraries and promoting understanding of library services and needs. We represent the library’s point of view to elected officials in order to obtain desired financial support.
The Library Manager is an ex-officio board member who attends all the local Friends Chapter meetings. The Library Manager works with his/her group to create a budget that supports the library’s mission and activities.
Joining a Friends group is easy. Simply go to your local library, complete a membership application and attend the scheduled meetings of the group.
How are Board members selected? Officers? Board Members and Officers are selected through a recruitment process conducted by the Nominating Committee. Names can be submitted to the Board for consideration, as well as nominated from the floor at the time elections are held.
Do Friends pay dues? Yes, each local chapter sets its own membership dues.
The Umbrella Friends Group meets monthly on the 3rd Thursday of the month. No meetings are held during the months of July and August. The meetings are hosted by libraries throughout the county.
Are groups required to have activities open to the public? Yes, depending on the nature of the activity. At a regular board meeting, individuals who are not members may attend but do not have a vote or a voice. Any Friends activity that is advertised to the public is open to all who are interested.
Are groups required to have a full Board of Directors? Yes, the size of the Board is dependent upon the size of the group and their bylaws.
What is a 501(C)(3) Organization? Organizations described in section 501(c)(3) are commonly referred to as charitable organizations. These are exempt from Federal Income Tax of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954.
990 The 990 is a form used to report annual income and revenue to the Internal Revenue Service. This formis required for all non profit organizations.
Ways in which Friends raise money Book Fairs Gift Shop Revenue Special Programs Donations Coffee Shops
Fund raising – In addition to advocacy, Friends raise money to support the library’s programs and services, which include staff appreciation, staff development, Youth Services activities and education.
Funds raised by the Friends is used primarily for the benefit of the local library branch. Expenditures of the funds should be done in cooperation with the Library Branch Manager. Usually funds are raised to supplement what can not be provided by the Broward County Libraries budget.
Bylaws Bylaws are the written rules for conduct of a corporation, association, partnership or any organization. Bylaws generally provide for meetings, elections of a board of directors and officers, filling vacancies, notices, types and duties of officers, committees, assessments and other routine conduct. Bylaws are, in effect a contract among members, and must be formally adopted and/or amended
The Umbrella Friends group reviews and approves local chapters bylaws