“The Foundation match grant engaged the whole community to make the new library a reality,” said Galesburg Public Library Director Noelle Thompson. “The Galesburg Public Library belongs to the entire Galesburg community. It was essential that all members of our community have the opportunity to participate in this project.”
Galesburg Community Foundation offered a 2:1 match grant challenge as an incentive for individual donors to give to the library campaign. For every $2.00 donated, the Foundation matched an additional $1.00 up to $350,000. By the end of the campaign on September 30, more than $700,000 had been donated through the challenge, unlocking the Foundation match and resulting in a total gift of more $1,050,000 that will be used by Galesburg Public Library Foundation to build out the community room in the new library.
The Community Room will serve as a multi-purpose space for the public. “We wanted to give the library a tool that would allow them to connect with members of the community. We also wanted to give members of the community a chance to see what can happen when they give together. The Community Room was our chance to do both,” said Joshua D. Gibb, President and CEO of Galesburg Community Foundation, “The library is a place where everybody in our community can go. The library as an institution is important for Galesburg.”
Donations came from all corners of the community. “It has been amazing to see so many individuals and business owners come forward to support this project. Its success illustrates that people believe in this community and the value a new library adds to it.” said Heather Sipes, Executive Director of Galesburg Public Library Foundation.
The community can still get involved in the library project. Funding opportunities include the archives and genealogy section, the teen zone, bird-safe glass, and outdoor spaces.
“The library is a living, evolving organization,” said Thompson. “We are committed to adapting to our community’s changing needs, and we invite all community members on that journey forward.”