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PROGRAMS

Friends of the Surprise Libraries supports our community in a number of ways: ongoing programs, grants to local schools, gifts to local public libraries and donations to literacy organizations or lending libraries.

School Grants
LOCAL SCHOOLS – RECEIVE GRANTS

Friends of the Surprise Libraries School Grant program is available to elementary schools and high schools to receive monetary awards.

Each year Friends of the Surprise Libraries reaches out to the local elementary and high schools in the Dysart Unified School District No.89, and local charter schools, to support programs that encourage reading and literacy. Beginning in 2014, the Nadaburg Unified School Distict No.81 is also included in this program. With school system budget constraints many schools do not have funding they would like to bring a popular author to the school, or purchase books that might inspire young boys and girls to read.

The Friends began their grant program in 2006. Over the last several years local schools have received over $265,296. Funds for these grants come from the resale of donated books sold by Volunteers at Friends’ Place in the lobby of the Surprise Library on Bullard Avenue.

Each school fills out an application explaining how a grant would help the school library or classroom and its students. A committee of Friends members then decides on the recipients and funds are distributed. In years past, these grants have funded projectors to enable a class to read together, computers to enable special learning programs, and many other things that may not have been possible without the support of the Friends grants.

Grant Application Forms:
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    • GRANT REQUEST INSTRUCTIONS CURRENTLY BEING REVISED
  •  Grant recipients historical listing: Friends of the Surprise Libraries Inc. Scholarship
    TOTAL SCHOLARSHIPS FUNDED $19,000

    Friends awards a scholarship annually to a graduating high school student to assist with college tuition. The scholarships are administered by The Dysart Education Foundation. Student scholarship recipients are responsible for keeping the Foundation informed of all current information concerning home address, class schedule and G.P.A. and transcripts. Friends of the Surprise Libraries funds HSE & STEM Grants
    TOTAL HIGH SCHOOL EQUIVALENCY & STEM GRANTS FUNDED $10,200

    Friends provides funding to ALTRUSA OF THE WEST VALLEY in support of their West Valley service project covering the cost for HSE (formerly known as GED) testing for students completing the program at Rio Salado Community College in Surprise and at Dysart Community Center in El Mirage. ALTRUSA is the host of a reception for the students, and their family members. Each student is reimbursed for the HSE test and given a certificate during a special meeting in May every year. Friends has also provided funding to provide scholarships to middle school aged girls at Canyon Ridge Elementary School to attend ASU Summer S.T.E.M. Camps. Four scholarships were given in 2016 and four more are planned for 2017. Annual Spring Bookmark Contest -

    Friends of the Surprise Libraries supports local public and school libraries in addition to supporting literacy. For several years, the Friends have used their annual Bookmark Contest to encourage local 6th, 7th, and 8th graders to create bookmarks with a theme of reading and literacy. The Friends award the top finalists a plaque with their winning bookmark in addition to a monetary award. The bookmarks are professionally printed and offered to patrons of Friends’ Place, the used book store inside the Surprise Library.

    The Friends receive applications from Dysart District, Nadaburg District and Surprise area Charter and home schools. A committee met to decide which bookmarks would become finalists. The efforts of the students always make this decision a challenge.

    The 2017 winners are:

    First Place $125 - Abigayle Tracey, for her entry “Reading can fill your imagination”
    Second Place $100 - Jacqueline Lozano”
    Third Place $75 - Destiny Lambert, for her entry “Between the pages is a whole new world.”

    Honorable Mention each $25.00:

    Erika Arevalo
    Elizabeth Lysy
    Christie Zhang

    All entries are on a regular sheet of 8 1/2" x 11" BLANK COPY or TYPING paper with a 2 1/2" line drawn as the work area "strip" for the art work. Once art work is complete, the work is to be delivered on the 8 1/2" x 11" full sheet of paper. Art work must be signed on the back of the "strip" and submitted with a completed Entry Form.









    Annual Summer Reading Program

    This program is supported by Friends of the Surprise Libraries and we sponsor many of the special programs for kids.


    Ongoing Programs
    • Friends' Place (the used book store). Gently used hard bound, paperback and audio books are available for sale at great prices whenever the library is open. DVD's and CD's are also available. All merchandise is donated by members of the community.

    • Sponsorship of Gifts to Surprise Libraries. Each year Friends of the Surprise Libraries funds a number of much needed items. The most significant gift was the large bookdrop with a special section for audio and video items protecting those items from damage in the Arizona heat. This book drop is located in the South parking lot.

      YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED!

      WORKING TOGETHER FOR THE LIBRARY
      If you do not have a Library Card, stop by either Library to obtain one. Bring identification and information that you are a Maricopa County resident. One need not be a resident of Surprise to have a Library Card.

      Show your support; use your card.



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