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Douglas County Libraries Foundation

The Douglas County Libraries Foundation plays a vital role in our community by providing resources that help Douglas County Libraries serve children and families. Your donation helps us create bright futures and elevate our community by inspiring a love of reading, discovery and connection.

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Camp DCL

Class

Youth Development 

Beneficiaries

Children (4-12 years)
Ethnic/Racial Minorities
Families
General population
Single Parents

Description

Camp DCL at Douglas County Libraries offers cool spring, summer and fall camps where kids ages 6-12 can learn, play and explore, with plenty of hands-on activities. When parents are looking for experience-rich activities to keep young thinkers or tinkerers engaged, Douglas County Libraries is the answer. Providing rich entertainment as well as education, kids at Camp DCL can "Be a Chef, a Builder, a Coder, a Detective, or a Robotics Engineer". Be a Chef caters to budding cooks, with delicious options including "The Breakfast Club" and "Baking Boot Camp." Be a Builder teaches different aspects of building and design each day, enabling campers to build toys, games and more. Be a Coder encourages kids to create their own video games, as well as learn other coding skills. Be a Detective teaches cool skills like fingerprinting and problem solving, for use by super-sleuths; and Be a Robotics Engineer encourages budding engineers with fun, hands-on experiences, including the opportunity to build a robot.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

DCL offered 5 Spring camps open to 20 participants each. All filled with waiting lists. Sixteen summer camps served 20 participants each. All filled with waiting lists.

Testimonials from Spring camps:
"My daughter LOVED this camp! Everything about it was great: the communication, organization, agenda, age-appropriate, class size, student-to-teacher ratio. Great job! Thank you!"

"My kids loved this camp! They tried new food that they might not have eaten at home. Well organized and they said the instructors were great. Kudos to the staff for coming in the last day despite the bad weather. We'll definitely try another DCL camp in the future!"

"My daughter was sad when the camp ended, she liked it so much!"

"Thanks for a WONDERFUL week!!"



Summer Reading Program

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Adults
Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Description

Reading programs provide kids with a reason to read for the fun of it! They also encourage kids to read, to develop a love of reading, and to make connections between reading and their everyday lives. Programs provide prize or activity incentives to help build the reading habit, and include supplemental event experiences across the district. In 2018, nearly 16,000 people registered for our reading programs, and about 4,400 attended related programs/events.

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Evidence of Program's Success

DCL Summer Reading events are filled to capacity, providing evidence that our patrons value events and opportunities for children to participate.

Summer Reading survey responses (2018):

"My kids were so eager to complete their summer reading logs that they would bring books to the playground and want to read instead of play!"

"My kids look forward to the kickoff party every year for the Summer Reading Program! It really motivates them to read over summer break. They got their books out this afternoon and started reading!"

"We love our library and our librarians! Thank you for all that you do to make the library a fun place to go."

"Please continue the Summer Reading Program - it is so motivating! Thank you, thank you, thank you for making it easier for all the moms in the summer!"

"We had a great time, and we enjoyed this for the third year. Thank you for all you do to make Highlands Ranch such a wonderful community."

Early Childhood Literacy

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Children birth to age 3
Female Infants/Babies (under age 5)
Infants/Babies (under age 5)
Male Infants/Babies (under age 5)
Mentally/Emotionally Disabled

Description

Literacy programs are the foundation of fulfilling DCL's mission to serve the community. Early childhood literacy (ECL) programs not only teach children to read, but encourage positive interaction between a parent and a child. These programs are all focused on our youth and ECL:

Cuddle Up &Read
DCL partners with area hospitals (Parker Adventist, SkyRidge, and Castle Rock Adventist) to encourage new parents to begin a lifetime of reading together. DCL children's librarians help select just the right books for babies, as well as for parents who may need help in the areas of new baby care, health and nutrition, schooling, home organization and discipline.

Book Start
Library volunteers bring Storytime fun and high quality, age appropriate early literacy activities to children in Douglas County child care centers.

Storytime
Storytime at DCL is based on the American Library Association's parent education initiative, Every Child Ready to Read. Early literacy is what children know about reading and writing before they can actually read and write. Our librarians focus on:
•Educating and entertaining our youngest patrons and their caregivers.
•Explaining, showing examples, and empowering adults to Read, Write, Play, Sing, and Talk with their children.
•Providing fun and rich experiences that build a love of books, libraries, and reading that will stay with children for a lifetime.

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Evidence of Program's Success

We experience continued requests for more Storytimes as well as continued partnerships with Douglas County childcare centers, hospitals and pediatrician offices, requesting more information and involvement.

These patrons comments were collected through post-event surveys:

"Up to the age of three, Sara had no interest in reading books. Instead of reading, she would flip to the last page and say, "the end." But her parents know how important reading was to a bright future. They began attending Storytime at DCL in Castle Rock and heard the librarian suggest a goal of 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten. They made that their mission. As a first-grader, Sara was placed on an advanced learning plan as part of a gifted program for reading and writing, and today, as a fourth-grader, she is ranked in the top 1% in reading nationwide (based on recent test results)."

"Mr. Steve comes to us every Thursday and is fantastic. He is so amazing with the kids and makes a real effort to know their names and make them feel special. He has become an integral part of my program and the kids light up (and everyone wants to come to school) on Thursdays. I feel blessed to be a part of [Book Start] and especially to have Mr. Steve. He is amazing! We love him!"

"I am a retired teacher in the Book Start program. I have been reading to 60+ children, ages 2-5, every Thursday at a lovely day care center for over 6 years. Of all the volunteer opportunities I have had, Book Start is my all-time favorite. I am greeted by shrieks of joy each week. Book Start has provided wonderful books, poems, songs, and manipulative materials week after week. The children are totally involved and excited. The best part is seeing the same child graduate from the diaper class to kindergarten, and watching a love of books develop. Douglas County Libraries has provided a wonderful, rewarding literary opportunity for our youngest residents and adult volunteers alike." -Nancy L.

Sensory-Enhanced Storytime

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years)
Families
Mentally/Emotionally Disabled

Description

This groundbreaking Storytime enhances Every Child Ready to Read practices for the enjoyment and education of people on the autism spectrum, or of those with other special needs. It serves individuals of all ages who benefit from a Storytime setting modified to include a closed room, lowered lighting, and lowered music, where movement and conversation are encouraged and the senses are engaged in multiple ways.

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Evidence of Program's Success

Parents have provided feedback that they are relieved and happy to have a place where they and their children can feel safe and comfortable:

"[Sensory-Enhanced Storytime] is an opportunity for my homeschooled son with ASD to be in the community and around other kids. I love that my special needs child is not ostracized for needing to get up or touching everything."

"[Sensory-Enhanced Storytime] leaders are incredible, and so kind. I see so much joy in the kids as they enjoy the songs, visuals, sensory objects and activities. And the closed room is great!"

"[Sensory-Enhanced Storytime] has helped my child very much. He speaks full sentences clearly at home. He sings most of the songs we have learned at Storytime. He asks me to bring him to the library to hear the stories. He learned take items from the reader and bring things back to the reader. I think he has improved his socializing skills very much, too."

"Because of [Sensory-Enhanced Storytime], Noah is showing more confidence in being around a wider variety of people. He is remembering (most days) to sign "thank you" and is showing better mimicking skills during finger plays and scarf songs."

Signature Author Programs

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Adults
Aging/Elderly/Senior Citizens
Children and Youth (infants - 19 years)
Families

Description

Douglas County Libraries celebrates writers and literature with signature author events, held up to six times each year at event venues around the county. These exceptional events put our patrons up close and personal with best-selling, nationally-known authors of fiction, nonfiction, cookbooks and kids' books. Many events include refreshments, music and supplemental programs that make each an experience not to be missed.

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Evidence of Program's Success

Formal feedback, informal testimonials from participants desiring more of these events in our community, and an increase in media coverage, before and after signature events, tell us that these events are highly successful.

"I just bought tickets for Jason Segel's upcoming presentation and want to thank you and DCL for putting on these events. My daughter, Amy, was born with eye muscle misalignments and needed surgeries in elementary school to see correctly. She was always at the bottom of her classes and said she hated reading and writing. Then, a few years ago when Amy was in second grade, I brought her to a DCL event see Jane O'Connor of the Fancy Nancy series. Something clicked. Her attitude about reading changed. After meeting an author and getting a book autographed, Amy started reading more. Since then, I've taken her to other author events put on by DCL. She especially loved Daniel Handler at the Lemony Snicket event. Each time Amy heard from a writer in person, she focused more on reading, then writing her own stories and then illustrating. We saw her scores in Language Arts at her sixth-grade conference night and she's now ahead of grade level. She says it's because she's "a reader." Her teachers, reading intervention specialists and her own work all helped. And DCL played a huge role too. So, thank you for bringing authors to your library members. My husband and I don't have any writing experience. We couldn't inspire Amy. The author events you offered provided the inspiration Amy needed." - Kim, a DCL parent

"We drove 6 hours to meet Karen [Kingsbury] and it was worth it! My daughter and I were so excited for the opportunity and will remember it forever." - Survey respondent from DCL Presents: Karen Kingsbury, June 2018

"I've heard many author presentations over the years, but I must say that Craig Johnson proved to be the most entertaining I've ever seen. He channels Walt Longmire! Thanks so much for hosting him." - Survey respondent from DCL Presents: Craig Johnson event, September 2018

I loved it! The VIP code cracking was quite entertaining and the food was amazing. (Dan Brown)

Wow! Wow! Wow! What a fabulous event! (Dan Brown)

It was an amazing evening! My mother and I had the best time. (Jojo Moyes)

The entire experience was awesome. What a great evening, and what a value! (Jojo Moyes)

My 11- and 12-year-old both say, "5 stars." Loved it! Lemony Snicket was hilarious!

[Lemony Snicket] was a hoot to watch and listen to. It was nice that he took a moment or several moments to converse with everyone he signed a book for. Well done!

My son said, "it was probably the best night of my life!" (Lemony Snicket)

We had a wonderful time. Great location, greatest speaker and author. Most enjoyable evening. Very well done! (Craig Johnson)

This was the best thing my husband and I have done in a very long time. (Craig Johnson)

Superb event! Well-organized and executed, especially for 1,000 attendees. Diana (Gabaldon) was delightfully entertaining.

I could have listened to Diana (Gabaldon) speak for hours! Fabulous event!

This was an amazing night! I had hesitated about purchasing the VIP [tickets], but would do it again in a heartbeat! (Diana Gabaldon)

We loved it! I've been waiting to meet [Diana Gabaldon] for 20 years. Hope you will do it again.

This event and this guest were no less than a sheer delight! What a great way to spend a Friday night. Brad (Meltzer) was delightful.

Douglas County Libraries, thanks for your faith in books! -note from author Chris Bohjalian

One of the best author talks I have ever attended. Thanks for the airplane food-that was a great touch and a fun treat! (Chris Bohjalian)

From a patron who attended the Chris Colfer event. "Thank you for a memorable and fun evening with my 10-year-old daughter! Chris was such a friendly and engaging speaker with a passion for the art of storytelling. We left even more inspired to read, read, read and perhaps write a story of our own."

Battle of the Books

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Families
Female Children (5 - 14 years)
Male Children (5 - 14 years)

Description

Battle of the Books is a reading incentive program that engages hundreds of public elementary school students throughout Douglas County, as they compete for the chance to become Battle of the Books champions. Teams of students in divisions by grade level (3-4 and 5-6) begin reading from a prescribed book lists each fall; inter-school battles take place in February and March. Individual students prepare for battles by reading ten books from the book list for their grade level; battles are won by correctly answering questions about books and authors. Battle of the Books enhances student education and celebrates a love of reading and literacy.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Program testimonials:

"Thank you so much for this program! My third grade son has gone from a kid who complained about reading to one who devours books. I can't thank Douglas County Libraries enough for that."

"We love Battle of the Books! It's our favorite time of the school year!"

"This program rocks! We only wish you had it in middle school so we'd be able to keep competing!"

"Thank you for showing my child that reading and learning can be as exciting and rewarding as a sporting event."

"My daughter learned so much from being a part of this team - about working as a group, deductive reasoning, and how to make your voice heard. Thank you."

Page to Stage

Class

Education 

Beneficiaries

Families
Female Children (5 - 14 years)
Male Children (5 - 14 years)

Description

Page to Stage productions brings children's theater to Douglas County Schools through a partnership with Front Range Theatre Company. Each production is based on literature and designed to promote arts-in-education efforts and literacy. Performances are free to the schools, and once completed within the school district, are brought to patrons and families in the libraries. Programs inspire children to read through the enactment of timeless stories that continue to charm modern audiences.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Front Range Theater desires to continue the partnership. Schools ask to participate year after year. The library audience expands year to year.

"Just wanted to say thank you for Aesop's Fables performance today at Sedalia. The kids really liked it - hope the actors did, too. They did a great job!" -Mary Ann

"Hey, all! A huge THANK YOU to all involved in bringing 'Page to Stage' to our libraries. I attended 'The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe' with my wife and kiddos at the Castle Rock branch last night and we were enchanted by a wonderful, sweeping performance by the players. We've read the book together, watched the movie together, but last night was a wonderfully fresh window into the story. My kiddos can't wait to read the book again. Thanks for all your hard work!" -Wade B.

"Hi, we had the Page to Stage presentation this morning at Cherry Valley Elementary - they were fabulous! From the moment that they walked into our building, to the time that they left, they were just so professional and personable to each of us. The students will remember this performance always!" -Kelly D.

Key aspects of this profile information have been reviewed by Community First Foundation staff. Each organization is exclusively responsible for the content that appears on the profile page. Community First Foundation offers general guidance as to the purpose of each area but does not require or encourage charities to include anything in particular in each section.