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New Bookmobile Vehicle Construction Estimated for March Completion
Written by admin, February 17th, 2020   

We wanted to update our patrons and donors about the progress on our new bookmobile construction. We were originally planning for a January launch but our custom bookcase craftsman underestimated the amount of time he’d need and also lost some weeks due to illness. All shelving components should be completed very soon and then we’ll be hoping for quick turnaround on the wood finishing, which is a separate contractor. The finishing shop is inundated with home cabinetry work due to post-fire home reconstruction, so fingers crossed they’ll be able to get us through the queue smoothly.

Thanks for your continued support and patience! We know you are just as anxious to see this new rig in action as we are.


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Rotary Club of Santa Rosa Foundation Supports Bookmobile’s “Education for All Ages” Initiative
Written by admin, February 5th, 2020   

Rotary Club of Santa Rosa

When you start with Rotary, good things happen, and we are grateful to be back in partnership with the Rotary Club of Santa Rosa Foundation for 2020! They have made a grant toward our Education for All Ages initiative, which focuses on the broad access to high quality educational reading material that makes a community strong. We look forward to putting this support to use throughout the year. Thank you, Santa Rosa Rotarians!

Ever thought about checking out Rotary? Here’s a message from 2019 – 2020 Club President Cathy Vicini:

DO YOU WANT TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN OUR COMMUNITY AND THE WORLD?

We’re a leadership organization of local business, professional and civic leaders. We meet regularly, get to know each other, form friendships, and through that, we’re able to get things done in this community. Membership in Rotary immediately connects you with a broad range of professions and professionals in our Club. We encourage our members to do business with each other because we trust the members in Rotary. Service is what Rotarians do. We change the lives of others in need. Please consider attending our meetings, meeting our members, and joining our Rotary Family.  By doing so, you will multiple your ability to positively impact our local and international community.

Our Foundation is the charitable arm of the Rotary Club of Santa Rosa (since 1989), a Federal tax-exempt 501(c)(3) charity, tax ID# 68-0205619, so your gifts to our Foundation are tax deductible. Comprised of volunteers from the Rotary Club of Santa Rosa, we award grants to deserving non-profit organizations as well as scholarships to worthy students in the greater Santa Rosa area. Because of the work of our volunteers, our overhead is very low, and 97% of every dollar contributed goes directly to support local needs.


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Healdsburg Forever Locks In Literacy Resources for Local Residents
Written by admin, January 3rd, 2020   

Healdsburg Forever

Healdsburg Forever provides grants to Sonoma County nonprofit organizations serving the Healdsburg and Geyserville communities. Their vision is to ensure that the Healdsburg-Geyserville area is a sustainable, inclusive community in which all individuals have the opportunity to thrive. Since launching as a regional affiliate of Community Foundation Sonoma County in 2003, the Healdsburg Forever endowment has grown to over $1.5 million and has granted more than $1.1 million to 57 worthy programs supporting critical needs in education, health and human services, the arts, and the environment.

The Free Bookmobile is grateful to be one of those programs, benefiting from this support since 2011. It has driven our ability to reach deep into this multi-faceted community, learning where the needs really are, and rolling the bookmobile to meet them. Healdsburg Forever has generously extended funding for 2020 to make sure we continue our success in their region. Thanks to their donors, we will be able to reach out to toddler programs, preschools, elementary schools, aftercare facilities, high schools, low-income health clinics, senior housing, farmworker apartments, and more, including consistent public-access for all Geyserville residents, who lack any form of library or bookstore.

Thank you Healdsburg Forever, for both the vision AND the execution!


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Local Kiwanis Clubs Aid Free Bookmobile After Vehicle Crisis
Written by admin, December 20th, 2019   

Kiwanis-Logo

Kiwanis is a global organization of volunteers dedicated to improving the world one child and one community at a time. And they’re doing great work here in Sonoma County, with local chapters that mobilize helping hands and raise money for youth-oriented projects. We are very proud to have relationships with several of these clubs, and happy to report that they responded with aid when learning about our recent vehicle issues.

Kiwanis Club of PETALUMA has been a consistent supporter of our services and came through once again with a generous donation. We can’t wait to put those funds to use and get back to visiting the children’s programs, schools and homeless family shelters throughout Petaluma. Read more about this club by clicking here.

GEYSERVILLE Kiwanis Club has also been behind us for several years and we are thrilled that their help gets the bookmobile out to youth in their region. It’s also a pleasure for us to boost their fundraising efforts with an appearance at their annual breakfast.

Kiwanis Club of CLOVERDALE is doing good things to support reading in the north end of the county with their annual One Day for Literacy. We plan to join this event at the plaza on April 18, 2020. This is a new relationship for us but the club came through in our hour of need!

WINDSOR Kiwanis is also a new bookmobile supporter. This is an active club and you can read more about their many events and sponsorships by clicking here.

Thank you, Kiwanis Members, for everything you do!


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Fundraising Campaign Success Leads to Building of New Bookmobile
Written by admin, December 1st, 2019   

Success

WE DID IT! You did it. Our supporters came to our aid when we needed it most, and we are so very grateful. Our crowdfunding campaign on Fundrazr brought in well over $33,000 and our FUNdraiser Dinner at the Jenner Inn netted another $2,100 toward our outreach services. The Free Bookmobile will ride again!

Thank you for your investment in literacy and love of reading. The vehicle conversion work is well underway, with electrical, lighting and some welding already completed. Bookshelves are being constructed by a local craftsman and those will soon go out for finishing. Once they are installed, we’ll finish up with carpeting and some enhancements to our patron entrance to make things nice and safe. We are hoping for a January launch.

Here’s a fun photo from the archives in celebration. Who remembers our FIRST bookmobile, the little white trailer we towed around behind our family Suburban? In those days we just pulled into parks, homeless shelters, and low-income senior housing…

As many books as you can carry!


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Speedway Children’s Charities Revs Up Bookmobile Grant for 2020
Written by admin, November 25th, 2019   

Speedway Children's Charities

We love our friends out at the racetrack! The local chapter of Speedway Children’s Charities hosts fundraising events throughout the year at famed Sonoma Raceway, then distributes the proceeds to youth-supporting non-profits. It’s a wonderful model of philanthropy that has generated almost $7 million for the benefit of Sonoma County kids since 2001.

The events themselves are totally unique, starting with the hillside setting of one of America’s most challenging circuits and the fabulous raceway staff that plays host. The calendar for the 2020 season includes the Tour de Charity Karting Day, Speedway Children’s Charities NASCAR Banquet, Eric Medlen Nitro Night dinner, Red Bucket Brigade and Sonoma Show and Shine. To get in on the fun, call 707-933-3950 or view the full list by clicking here: https://www.speedwaycharities.org/events/#sonoma.

We also want to acknowledge the large role the Classic Sports Racing Group (CSRG) plays in helping raise these important funds. In October they will hold their Charity Challenge Vintage Car Races which features Track Rides for Charity. Last year they had everything from Can-Am cars to a Ferrari 250 GTO available for rides, offering a near-race-speed lap for participants.

A huge thank you to SCC Sonoma for doing amazing things for our community, including a largest-ever grant for the Free Bookmobile’s youth outreach program!


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Jenner Inn To Host Free Bookmobile FUNdraiser Dinner
Written by admin, November 5th, 2019   

FB Dinner Flyer

Another great way to support us in our time of need! Our friends at Jenner Inn are generously hosting a gourmet dinner FUNdraiser on November 21 on the gorgeous Sonoma Coast. We’ll have drinks, music, mingling, a lovely meal and a FREE choose-your-own raffle. The Jenner community has always been enthusiastic about our outreach and we are thrilled to have them behind us as we campaign to raise money for our new bookmobile and operations. Huge thanks to Charlie Coyne and his staff at the Jenner Inn for providing everything so that 100% of the proceeds will benefit our non-profit program!

Please check the flyer above for details and get your tickets today as space is limited. You can click here to use a credit card: https://tinyurl.com/y5re88my

OR send a check made payable to “Free Bookmobile” to Jenner Community Club, PO Box 1, Jenner, CA 95450.

See you there!


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Bethlehem Foundation Powers Senior Outreach for Fifth Year Running
Written by admin, November 1st, 2019   

Guerrilla community service

Our generous sponsors at the local Bethlehem Foundation have once again stepped forward to make sure we will be able to carry on our senior outreach in 2020. This has been a terrific partnership stretching back to 2015 and has meant that thousands more area elders, especially those of lesser financial means, have enjoyed the benefits of bookmobile service to their doorsteps.

Bringing books to access-challenged seniors has been a priority for the program since day one. Even during our initial trailer phase, we were able to find enough space in low-income housing parking lots to set up at properties like PEP Vallejo Street Apartments & Jennings Court. We wheeled our library-style carts down the ramp and into intimate browsing configurations for the residents. Check out the photo of one of these early visits!

We appreciate Bethlehem Foundation for reinvesting their funds right back into the community, even as the high-rise building they sold was guaranteed to continue serving it’s original constituency: aging folks with few resources. It’s a win-win for all of us and we thank them for their mission!


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Crowdfunding Campaign Launched to Replace Bookmobile Vehicle
Written by admin, October 24th, 2019   

FundRazr

Please help us build a replacement bookmobile so we can continue our important work spreading literacy and love of reading throughout Sonoma County!

We have received notice that our beloved big green truck must be phased out due to new CA air quality regulations. Good bookmobiles are scarce out there on the used market and new ones are extremely expensive. So we’re going to build our own and have set up a crowdfunding page to make it happen: https://fundrazr.com/bookmobile

For the past 10 years, our award-winning non-profit program has been boosting educational outcomes for local children, helping low-income families read together, and offering seniors opportunities for intellectual and social stimulation. We have grown this outreach to serve 25,000 people per year and demand for our bookmobile visits keeps rising. Our site partners want more but it will all come to a sudden halt unless we get a new vehicle ready by the end of the year. Please click here to donate now!

Fortunately we have already tracked down a great base model box truck we can convert. It has a semi-translucent roof for daytime illumination, a suitable patron entrance, and really low mileage on a workhorse V10 engine — should last another quarter million miles without breaking a sweat! Best of all, we won’t be giving up any shelf space compared to our original bookmobile. In fact our new custom interior design will let us offer an even bigger variety of high-quality free books to the public.

Please consider making a generous donation toward our goal! All the money will stay local as we have Sonoma County vendors lined up to do the conversion work: hardware modifications, electric & lighting, carpet, and of course the shelves that will carry thousands of great books of all types and levels to eager readers out there who are challenged for access to other resources. Your donation will only be processed if we reach our ENTIRE GOAL, so you can be assured the project will be completed and our new bookmobile will hit the road. And if you wish, your name and/or donation amount can remain anonymous to other visitors to this page.

THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH for your help in our time of need!!


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Free Bookmobile Graduates to Independent NPO Status
Written by admin, September 2nd, 2019   

Thank You SCPLF!

After five years of very productive partnership with the Sonoma County Public Library Foundation (SCPLF), the Free Bookmobile has graduated to independent status with its own non-profit registration. We’re striking out on our own to see if we can grow the program into a permanent institution that will outlive its founders!

SCPLF has been a terrific and resilient ally, and we are tremendously grateful for their unflagging support of our mission. They approached us in 2014 with the idea of mutual benefit and their assistance allowed us to focus better on what we do so well: create access to high quality books for the underserved. Our impact grew by 20% in each of the next several years, a testament to the success of the relationship, and a wonderful gift to the children, adults and seniors throughout the region.

The Free Bookmobile now seeks to blossom into a significantly larger organization, which means it’s time to part ways, in application if not in spirit. We continue to appreciate the SCPLF mission: to support of the Sonoma County Public Library System as well as other organizations, programs, and activities that aim to promote the use of library resources, enthusiasm for reading and increased literacy for Sonoma County residents.

Thank you for all we accomplished together!


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