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Sweetwater group works to keep library programs alive

By Cassandra Webb, cwebb@ktxs.com
Published On: Apr 03 2013 05:49:45 PM CDT
Updated On: Apr 04 2013 08:29:54 AM CDT
SWEETWATER, Texas -

Some say public libraries in America are dying due to the Internet and a lack of public money. But in Sweetwater, a group of women are working hard to keep the library alive. 

Library Tag Day is the Women's Forum of Sweetwater's biggest effort to raise money for the library. It's been a tradition for nearly 100 years – and they don't plan on stopping any time soon.

Library funding in Texas was cut by 64 percent last year, meaning libraries across the state have lost grants, technical support, and staff.

This is where the Women's Forum of Sweetwater comes in.

"This is our center of town, this is our focus," said Women's Forum volunteer Karan Bergstrom.

The Women's Forum offered tags for people to wear in exchange for a donation of any amount.

Their passion is for the older generation and also the very young.

They say books with covers, pages and pictures are more likely to spark an interest in reading compared to the Internet.

"This is where they learn," said Women's Forum volunteer Lita MaEachern. "This is where they learn to love books and to read is probably the most important thing there is in a child's life."

Bergstrom said children would be extremely upset if the reading program ended.

Last year, the group raised almost $7,000. This year, their goal is $8,000 – and they believe they can do it.

"If we can make eight, I will be happy," McEachern said. "I think all of us would be."

As of Wednesday afternoon, the group has raised nearly $5,000.

For information on how you can donate to the library, call the County-City Library at 325-235-4978.