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Brandon Township Library grant

October 17, 2012 - Brandon Twp.- Fran Hotchkiss expects to be able to purchase at least 160 new books and 40-80 music cds with grant funds she recently won for the library.

The head of youth services was notified earlier this month by the Metro-Detroit Book and Author Society that the library would be awarded $2,000 as the winner of the Dick Johnston Grant, given to a public library for the purpose of establishing or improving a library collection.

"I'm very excited about this," said Hotchkiss, who accepted the award at a luncheon Oct. 15 in Livonia, accompanied by fellow children's librarian Robin Loughlin. "The grant is so beneficial to the library and patrons."

Hotchkiss applied for the grant Sept. 24. In her proposal, she noted how the Brandon Township Library's book budget has greatly decreased because of the economy. Brandon youth librarians average 24 on-site programs per week and 12 off-site programs (at schools) per month. Last year, the library served 15,545 youth by hosting 736 programs.

Hotchkiss plans to use the grant funds to purchase books, cds and movies used in weekly themed programs, about 40 different themes each year. These materials will be put together in themed reference kits, with about four books, three music cds, and a short movie for each program.

"Presently, we have to search and gather the materials for each program from our own collection," Hotchkiss explained in her proposal. "By reserving materials for our programs, they are not available for others to use. Sometimes patrons and teachers really love the materials and want to check them out, but we cannot allow them to because we have to continue to use them throughout the week(s)."

With the grant funds, the library will now have the materials readily available for patrons, and teachers can check out the kits when they are not being used for scheduled programs.

"This will be a real treat now," said Hotchkiss. "Everything will be at our fingertips."

Susan covers Brandon Township and Ortonville
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