The Library: a busy hive of learning that your support keeps humming.

The Library is a community of knowledge building and resource sharing. New parents and caregivers learn from each other at Born to Read, children prepare for school at Cruise into Kindergarten, adults receive the support they need to polish their resume or build a sense of community with neighbors. And you provide the honey to nourish it all.

This report demonstrates the impact you had last year.

Busy Basics by Number


How Does The Library Support Early Learning?

Born to Read, Storytimes and Discovery programs build a love of reading, improve motor skills through crafts and activities, and develop skills that help children succeed in school and life.

29,592 children and their parents and caregivers benefited from Born to Read, Storytimes and Discovery programs in 2018. That’s an 18% growth from last year.

188 children and caregivers were better prepared for Kindergarten by attending Cruise into Kindergarten. That’s more than double the number as last year!

The Library delivered 5,651 books to help families build their personal libraries and jump start early literacy.

STEM programs at The Library introduce young learners to early science, technology, engineering and math concepts. These programs can bridge the digital divide by providing access to new technologies children may not have at home.

4,749 kids and their caregivers attended 307 STEM programs held at The Library.

"Sticky" Learning

Starts at age 0

Play Flights: Every Child Ready to Read’s 5 Early Literacies

Born to Read focuses on 5 early literacy practices:

Reading together is the most powerful way to get children interested in reading and ready to read.

Writing begins with fine gross motor skills. Since babies are not ready for pencils and paper, we practice our “Shaky Egg” song every week.

Singing slows language down so children can hear the smaller sounds in words.

Talking to babies builds oral language, which is important to build strong conversational skills.

Playing is a child’s job. In Born to Read, we play with puppets, do rhymes and fingerplays, and encourage caregivers to bounce their babies and move their arms and legs.

Supporting the Brood Chamber

The Library guides caregivers and encourages them to engage with their children and repeat the experiences they learn in Born to Read at home. Focusing on rhymes, simple children’s books, basic movements, and songs helps parents and babies learn to read together.

"The Library guides caregivers and encourages them to engage with their children and repeat the experiences they learn in Born to Read at home. Focusing on rhymes, simple children’s books, basic movements, and songs helps parents and babies learn to read together."

- Josh, Madeline L. Olewine Memorial Library

Bee Prepared

Libraries Level Up Learning

The Library teams up with all nine area school districts to provide Summer Reading Club, helping to prevent 'summer slide.'

7,746 kids and their caregivers attended 146 in-house Summer Reading Club programs.

3,844 lunches were served during Summer Reading Club. Lunches for Lunch at The Library were provided by the Dauphin County Technical School and the Central Pennsylvania Food Bank.

Summer Reading Club readers, age 0 to 17 years old, read a total of 2,088,996 minutes. That’s a 44% increase since 2016!

"A parent explained to me how thankful she is for the summer lunch program. She brings her two children in Monday through Thursday for lunch at The Library. This has helped her family as her husband started new employment after a long stretch of unemployment. The family also comes to library programs and the children talk excitedly about the books they check out. The Library is helping to feed both body and mind."

– Marie, Northern Dauphin Library

Wax Making

All Ready Access: Removing Barriers to Library Resources

In 2018, The Library launched All Ready Access in partnership with the Susquehanna Township School District. All Ready Access provides students and teachers immediate access to The Library’s online resources.

238 teachers and 2,127 students now have instant access to The Library’s online resources.

"Our partnership with the Dauphin County Library System allows us to provide expanded opportunities to our students. The All Ready Access Program will allow our secondary students to access research databases to complete assignments and improve much needed research skills. Additionally, the program will help to improve the literacy skills of our elementary students and help them learn the beginning steps of research."

- Travis Waters, Superintendent, Steelton-Highspire School District

The Colony

Building Skills and Social Connections with Adult Learners

Learning does not end when a person enters adulthood. 2,597 adults attended 253 library programs designed for learners 18 years or older. These programs covered topics ranging from Estate Planning to Basic Car Maintenance to Planting a Pollinator-Friendly Garden.

The Library partnered with the League of Women Voters to present programs to help residents become informed voters.

269 adults learned basic technology skills at 29 computer programs. Over the course of the year, 84 adults received assistance using their mobile devices at Device Club.

"A gentleman attended Device Club to learn to use his cell phone in a traditional sense – to receive and make calls. With a little sleuthing, we discovered incoming calls were being forwarded to his landline. With one mystery solved, we practiced making phone calls from his cell phone. By the end of the program, he was able to place a phone call on his own."

- Jennifer, East Shore Area Library

Transforming and Empowering

our Adult Workforce

Visitors learn about different occupations, practice for the exams needed to enter these careers, study and practice for their GED, build their math and reading skills, and even learn how to become a U.S. citizen. College students study and practice for placement exams and graduate school admissions exams.

"For an entire year, 7 to 8 hours each day, a patron holed up in the Quiet Room at the East Shore Area Library to study for her CPA exam. Once a week, she would carry armfuls of books home for her little girl. I grew accustomed to her wave and smile each morning as she arrived.

A few weeks went by and I noticed she had not been in. During her next visit, I asked how her studies were progressing and found out she had taken the exams and passed! She’s a CPA!"

- Jennifer, East Shore Area Library

Sweet Success

at Keystone Correctional Services

Keystone Correctional Services, a work release community corrections program that works to build the self-esteem and employment options for men re-entering their communities, partnered with The Library to help meet their own mission to support men as they return to the workforce.

In 2018, The Library worked with 40 men at the facility.

"The Library provides multiple benefits to our re-entrants who have signed up to use the Library services while out of the building (and are excited to have a Library card).

The laptops are a HUGE benefit to our facility, whether it be to create an email—some have no idea how to do such a task without the help of Library staff—check email and/or apply online for a job.

The use of the laptops and assistance with the applications (and ability to receive an email confirmation), has allowed them to attain employment that, otherwise, they may not have attained.

We are extremely grateful for the continued support and assistance!"

- Jan Cassell, Employment Coordinator, Keystone Correctional Services, Inc.

A Swarm Of Support

from The Library’s Donors and Volunteers

The Library’s donors gave half a million dollars in 2018, including a large grant to purchase digital books (eBooks and eAudiobooks) and $10,000 in additional funding for the summer lunch program, which will be used to add snacks on Fridays and extend the program to fill the entire summer.

The Library’s Friends groups gave more than $32,000 and planned numerous programs for our communities to enjoy – including a meet and greet in Elizabethville with children’s author Gordon Korman.

Volunteers help The Library meet the many needs of our communities. They keep our shelves neat and orderly, greet program and event participants, process materials, help with tech questions, and so much more.

These tireless 115 volunteers gave more than 8,800 hours in 2018. Their contributions equal the hours of 4.52 full time employees.

The Library’s Board of Trustees is 100% volunteer and contributed 528 hours of service to guide The Library throughout the year.

Worker Bees

Staff Campaign Funds

Volunteer Scholarship Fund

Library staff appreciates our hard-working volunteers and elected to support high school senior volunteers who give more than 100 hours of service to The Library. During the Annual Fund Drive, The Library’s staff and Senior Management Team gave $1,350 to establish a scholarship fund for our dedicated high school volunteers.

Income / Expense Report

View Full 2018 Income / Expense Report >


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Born to Read, Storytimes and Discovery programs build a love of reading, improve motor skills through crafts and activities, and develop skills that help children succeed in school and life.

Nancy passed away in February of 2018, leaving a bequest to the The Library that was placed in the Light the Way to Learning East Shore Endowment Fund. This fund allows the East Shore Area Library, Nancy’s home base, to continue to meet the needs of its visitors as library service evolves over time.

"Nancy was a wonderful person who came in every week to do the paging list at the East Shore Area Library. Not only did she locate items requested by patrons from other branches, but she also on many occasions assisted patrons in finding items they were looking for at East Shore. When she was through with the paging list, she would then take items processed for our patrons and shelve them on the self-serve shelves. She was always pleasant and had a smile for everyone, even on the evenings when she was not really feeling well."

- Minta, East Shore Area Library