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For Immediate Release

Contacts: Paul Edwards for Wayne County Community Foundation (570) 251-9993 or Molly Rodgers for Wayne Library Alliance (570) 253-1220.

The John and Helen Villaume Foundation joins the board of the Wayne Library Alliance in announcing a campaign to invest in a Library Technology Endowment Fund

Honesdale, PA – The John and Helen Villaume Foundation joins the board of the Wayne Library Alliance in announcing a campaign to invest in a Library Technology Endowment Fund. The new Technology Fund will help to assure that local residents have access to up-to-date technology tools and training now and into the future. The Technology Fund is administered by the Wayne County Community Foundation.

The John and Helen Villaume Foundation’s commitment of $40,000.00 represents an initial grant that will match donations and pledges received in the next six months. The Wayne Library Alliance will be seeking donations from donors who live in or have connections to Wayne County.

The Library Fund was started a number of years ago by a donation from Kent Brown to the Wayne County Community Foundation. The fund took a giant step forward this year with a major gift from Charles and Marianna Ross in the form of a house and property they donated which was auctioned off in May. The proceeds of the house auction were added to the existing Library Fund. The Fund agreement with the Wayne County Community Foundation states that the primary purpose of the fund is to assure that “the equipment, resources, and training need to be a literate digital citizen will be available” to everyone through their public libraries.

The John and Helen Villaume Foundation strongly supports the Alliance’s effort to create a sustainable source of income for libraries and to focus on the future. While public libraries do receive public funding from the state and local government, it represents only about half of the income needed to keep the local libraries open. Moreover, technology increasingly represents a core library service, offering high-speed Internet, wireless, computer access, e-books, e-audiobooks, and online databases and resources such as foreign language learning and homework help. Funding to keep pace with the growth and changes in technology is essential for the community.

By investing its grant dollars as a match for donations to the Library Technology Fund, the John and Helen Villaume Foundation is providing strong incentive for others to make a gift. Major gifts as well as small donations will all help because the match will, in essence, double the gift.

As the saying goes, “Mighty oaks from little acorns grow.” Anyone who believes that great things can come from modest beginnings is encouraged to send a donation to the Wayne County Community Foundation, 214 9th Street, Honesdale PA 18431, with a note on the memo line designating the gift to Wayne Library Alliance Technology Fund. Contributions are U.S. tax-deductible in the year they are made, allowing donors to maximize their deductions in years when they are most beneficial.

The John and Helen Villaume Foundation established by Honesdale natives John and Helen Villaume was created to benefit charitable, religious, scientific, literary and educational programs within Wayne County. Since its inception, the Foundation has made awards totaling over $1,000,000.00 with Wayne Bank managing the account in the Wealth Management and Trust Services Division of Wayne Bank.

PHOTO CAPTION-LEFT TO RIGHT: Back: Genevieve Reese, Wayne Library Alliance Board Member, Louis LaBar, Wayne Library Alliance Treasurer, Richard Krebs, Wayne Library Alliance Board Member, Jon Villaume, Villaume Foundation Board Member, Jane Bollinger, Wayne Library Alliance Board Member, Paul Edwards, Villaume Foundation Board President, Amanda Schmalzle, Wayne Library Alliance Board Member. Front: Nancy Mumford, Wayne Library Alliance Board Member, Molly Rodgers, Wayne Library Alliance System Administrator accepts the check for $40,000.00 from Dr. Paula Bennett, Villaume Foundation Board Member.

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