Upcoming Events

Friends of the Richmond Public Library Board Meeting: Friday, September 23 at 12 noon

Main Library’s Whittlesey Community Room, 325 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, 94804 

As always, our board meetings are open to members.

Immigration Workshops: Monday, September 26 and Monday, October 3 from 5:00PM to 7:00 PM

Main Library Whittlesey Community Room, 325 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, 94804

Have Immigration questions? This is an opportunity to speak to an attorney on a free and confidential basis. Sponsored by the Contra Costa County Bar Association.

Homework Help Program for Kids: Tuesdays and Wednesdays, August 30 to May 31, 2017 from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM

Main Library Whittlesey Community Room, 325 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, 94804

September 16 and future Fridays/Saturdays: STEAM Programs for Kids: Call 510-620-6557 Children’s Room for more information. 

Main Library Whittlesey Community Room, 325 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, 94804


Volunteer Opportunities


Be a Homework Help Tutor for kids grades K-6. 8/30/16 to 5/31/17, from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM. Adult volunteers can work from one to four hours per week.

Contact Susan White at: susan_white@ci.richmond.ca.us and


City Volunteer Forms available at:


MORE OPPORTUNITIES at Friends of the Richmond Public Library

We are seeking volunteers for book sorting. In addition, we welcome those with publicity, social media and technology talent. Email us at FriendsRPLCA@yahoo.com or call 510-620-6555 and leave a message

Summer is Almost Over

by Christine Volker

As many of you know, during summer, the library is busier than ever delivering programs, trying to reach kids and teens when they’re out of school and adults, as always.

The latest results from our elementary schools in Richmond on the California Assessment of Student Progress and Performance shows that on average, across schools, 47% of students are not meeting the English Language Arts/Literacy standard.   For our public high schools, outcomes are similar.

These underline how much more work we need to do to prepare our youth for better futures. Library programs are part of that.

Below is a sampling of the library’s programs this summer:

50 Story Times took place, with 1,631 children in attendance

In 17 sessions, the Reading Heroes program, aimed at improving children’s reading skills, served a total of 321 children. This was accomplished by volunteers contributing 192.5 hours.

250 kids participated in the Summer Reading Game, with drawing prizes by the Friends.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) workshops took place in August with a total of 63 kids who built circuits and towers with provided materials.

Additionally, 776 people enjoyed specialized children’s programs and other activities sponsored by the Friends of the Richmond Public Library.

For adults, a well-attended author talk by Mary Monroe, financial and legal seminars, along with Summer Reading Games for both adults and teens rounded out the offerings.

And, for kids of all ages, two distinguished professors, pictured below, led eager participants on Pokémon Go Safaris!

Sandra Stewart, Administrative Librarian, and Janelle Van Hook, Librarian

Teen Program Award

by Christine Volker

Añgela Cox, Teen Services Librarian announced that the Teen S.A.T. Workshop garnered a silver award for Best Testing Preparation Program by Parents Press Newspaper’s Contra Costa County voters.

Congratulations, Añgela!

Each year, she puts her heart into preparing young people for success via this program, which the Friends sponsor.

Her letter can be found below:



Member Surveys

by Christine Volker

In May Untitledwe reached out to members, exploring potential activities and their suggestions. Thank you to all of our respondents!

Here’s the scoop: The response rate was an incredible 40%. This demonstrates that our members are engaged and care about our organization and its mission.

They support book sales, which are a critical fund raising mechanism, they donate books and/or purchase them from us. 64% have read our newsletter, a key in our ongoing communication and community building. 58% have borrowed materials from the library in the past year.

Their views of which goals are most important (voting for more than one was allowable):

Raise funds for the library (69%), build a culture of literacy (41%), act as an advocate for library funding (41%). Their suggestions for programs include: author talks (46%), large book sales (27%), with additional tips on resume writing workshops, special programs like music in the library, doing joint programs with the Richmond Public Library Foundation and the Library Commission.

Current book donation hours were cited by a few members as too narrow and inconvenient. We’re working on that.

Thanks to all of our members for their thoughts and suggestions.