Kid Stuff Books Activities Community Orgs
Laundromat Libraries to Expand After Receiving $5,600 Grant
program has already put more than 1,500 books in kids’ hands
Thanks to a $5,600 grant from the Women’s Giving Circle Fund of the Eau Claire Community Foundation, the Eau Claire Laundromat Libraries program will continue for a second year.
The L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library was recently awarded the grant funding. The program’s main focus to increase access to high-interest children’s books for families who visit the seven participating laundromats spread across the Eau Claire community. Books are offered in English, Spanish, and Hmong, and the libraries also offer information on early literacy and community resources.
According to a press release from the public library, the program offered nearly 2,000 books through the laundromat libraries in 2022, with readers taking home more than 1,500 of those to enjoy. One participant noted, “Going to the laundromat is exciting. And at a time when we’re new to the area and tight on funds, I am able to feed their currently voracious love of books.”
With the new grant, organizers are able to fund the installation of a “Family Read, Play, and Learn” space at Laundry Express on Golf Road, which will include child-sized seating, a white board with letter magnets, and a rotating collection of books for kids to take home and are welcome to keep.
“Books are a powerful tool for fostering brain and language development and for setting children up for success in school and life. Families can engage in these enriching experiences anytime, even when doing their laundry,” says Jerissa Koenig, Early Literacy Outreach Librarian and one of the program organizers.
Additional funds will be used to stock the Laundromat Libraries with diverse books in multiple languages for kids ages 0-8, the press release states.
Laundromat Libraries are located at:
- Laundry Express laundromat (2655 Golf Road)
- London Road Laundromat (2820 London Road)
- Pinehurst Laundromat (3061 N. Hastings Way)
- Risler's Laundromat (3233 Seymour Road)
- Super Wash Laundromat(s) (2625 N. Clairemont Ave. and 2703 Birch St.)
- Vine Street Laundry (2005 Eighth St.)
The library is partnering with the Friends of the L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library to further sustain the program in 2023 and in the future. To learn more, visit www.ecpubliclibrary.info/kids/laundromat-libraries.