Clarify the roles and responsibilities of your Friends and Foundation, including articulating where these roles intersect. Library Strategies can help you build strong relationships between these organizations – or help facilitate a merger if this model best supports your library.
In 2014, Library Strategies worked with the Friends of the St. Helena Public Library and the Library’s Foundation to merge the two organizations. The new organization, called the Friends & Foundation, took six months to build a new Board, establish its mission and hire a part-time Executive Director. Once the new Board was in place, the Friends & Foundation needed to plan for how it was going to focus its activities to attain its vision to “fully fund the Library through public support and private fundraising.”
The Friends & Foundation called on Library Strategies to work with them again in January 2015. Our consultants conducted interviews with the new Executive Director and several Board members to assess the new organization’s capacity. How much could it take on? – What challenges were they going to face? How could the organization structure itself to be successful? The conclusion was that the Friends & Foundation were ready to create a three-year development plan. Our consultants facilitated a day-long planning session with the Friends & Foundation’s Board and staff, and the Library Director.
The Board created a long-term vision and goals that addressed committee structure and staffing, public awareness, advocacy, annual campaigns and creating a signature fundraising event. Library Strategies consultants drafted the three-year development plan and helped the Board identify priorities for the first year.