MILFORD, Conn.-June 15, 2020-The Milford Elks Lodge #1589 recently awarded the Friends of the Milford Library a $2000 check as part of the Elks National Foundation’s Spotlight Grant. Originally intended to fund an Imagination Library program with the Milford Public Library Children’s Department, the Spotlight Grant funds have been donated directly to the Friends of the Milford Library due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dolly Parton created the Imagination Library program as a book gifting program that mails free books to children from birth to age five. While the team responsible for planning the Spotlight Grant program was excited to provide this great resource to Milford children, the grant donation will now be used to benefit the MPL Children’s Department, at the request of the Milford Elks. The grant money has been earmarked for a special project of FOML, an outdoor patio off of the renovated Children’s Department. The recent donation will be a great help in the FOML fund-raising efforts to create an outdoor family space for reading and programs.
Ron Fontaine, a Librarian himself and an officer at the Milford Elks Lodge #1589, was among those responsible for planning the Spotlight Grant program. “While it’s unfortunate that we’re unable to use the funds as we initially intended, our Lodge is happy to see that they’ll still be used to support a wonderful cause within our Milford community. This is the first time we’ve worked with the MPL, but the start of what we know will be a long-term relationship that collaboratively supports the youth of our community,” Fontaine said.
Among those present to accept the Spotlight Grant donation was Pam Pilla, President of the Friends of the Milford Library. “On behalf of the Friends of the Milford Library, we truly appreciate the donation from the Elks Lodge. The donation to the Friends will be used to support the Children’s Department of the Milford Public Library, which ultimately benefits all the families of Milford. We look forward to partnering with the Elks Lodge in the future.,” Pilla said.
The 2019-2020 grant year was the first year the Elks National Foundation offered the Spotlight Grant. Available to every Lodge in the country, the $2000 grant funds create an opportunity for Lodges to shine a light on two critical issues facing nearly every American community-family literacy and homelessness among our nation’s veterans. As the current pandemic is likely to intensify these issues, the Elks National Foundation has released another $3.7 million in Spotlight Grants for the 2020-2021 grant year. The Milford Elks Lodge #1589 looks forward to working with the Children’s Department staff and the Friends of the Milford Library to create a new Spotlight Grant program that furthers their collaborative impact on the Milford community.
The Milford Elks are much more than a social group. Inspired by the organization’s core principles of charity, justice, brotherly love, and fidelity, the Elks invest in the Milford community through programs and events that support our youth, veterans, and citizens. Through the dedication and involvement of our members, we proudly support many programs and organizations throughout the local community and the entire state. We engage in activities that promote the health, well-being, and positive development of the children. We work to help meet the needs of today’s veterans. And, we come together to improve our entire community’s quality of life, especially those in need.
The Friends of the Milford Library is a non-profit, 501(c)3 volunteer organization. All proceeds raised by the Friends are used to fund children and adult programs, our Little Libraries, museum passes, and expenses not covered by the Milford city budget. For questions or further information about the organization, email firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on the Milford Public Library, visit https://www.ci.milford.ct.us/milford-public-library. You can also follow them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.