What We Do

Durham Library Foundation supports Durham County Library by helping to fund on-going programs and special initiatives.

Humanities Programming

Launched and sustained through Durham Library Foundation funds, humanities programs bring nationally recognized authors and world-class scholars as well as local performers and expertise to thousands of Triangle citizens. Award-winning Events hosted at multiple branch locations feature a range of topics including music, art, local history, religion, literature and culture. Patrons who attend humanities programs are invited to join Durham Library Foundation Humanities Society (link to our Humanities Page), which rewards frequent attendees with special events.

North Carolina Collection

The North Carolina Collection is a primary resource for historical records of the city and county, providing a wealth of materials to assist with researching North Carolina-related topics, and also includes on-line exhibits. Funds from the Foundation help grow and support the collection and address ongoing fiscal challenges of storage and cataloging.

Summer Reading

Summer Reading, the most popular Durham County Library program, touches thousands of children each summer. For two months, children log their daily reading and become eligible for rewards as they progress, while also enjoying special events and fun celebrations. Foundation funding ensures the program’s vibrancy and continued growth, designed to reduce the impact of “summer slide” and to ensure school readiness for the next academic year.

Library Youth Partners

Library Youth Partners is an innovative, on-going training program for teens in grades 9 – 12. Program participants, who serve as positive role models for younger students, learn leadership and employment skills while providing story time reading for children in Durham County.

Special Initiative: Go for Launch
The Durham Library Foundation has traditionally organized major campaigns for capital and programming needs, including the current Go for Launch initiative for teens. Designed to build teamwork, communication and leadership skills, the program used space exploration as a platform to launch student involvement in STEAM. Six final teams from Durham County Library locations competed with their designs of an experiment to be conducted in orbit. The winning team’s project will be completed by an astronaut in a launch to the International Space Station.