Questions About Giving

Questions about your contributions?

We’ve compiled a list of common and frequently asked questions concerning our donations and annual funds. If your question isn’t answered here don’t hesitate to contact us.

The Wellesley Free Library, originally established in 1883 through the generosity of Horatio Hollis Hunnewell, is a traditional suburban public library. The main library and two branches provide lending materials, reference services, literacy support, and a wide range of community programs and training courses. The WFL is an integral part of the Wellesley community. The Library Trustees established the WFL Foundation in 2008 to serve as the main supporting organization of the Library. The sole purpose of the WFL Foundation is to raise private funds from individuals and organizations to supplement core funding from tax dollars. These additional dollars help maintain the high level of service that the Wellesley community has come to expect from its Library.

Prudent use of funding from the Town allows the WFL to fulfill its basic mission -- to provide free and convenient access to information. Most of the Library's budget goes toward core services including salaries and operating costs, not programs or collections. Much of what you see, use, and borrow at the WFL is paid for with private donations -- including programs, our enhanced collection, museum passes, the self-check machine, and more. There is no community resource as necessary to the growth of our citizens as the Wellesley Free Library, and no other institution that will benefit more from your support.

Your contribution is not only important -- it is essential! The WFL is a critical community resource -- our circulation and usage are extraordinarily high - more than 1000 patrons visit each day. Excellent library services are extremely important to the quality of life in Wellesley and while the tax impact budget covers many of the basic services offered at the library, over the past 5 years between 15-20% of the operating needs are met through private funding. The WFL is an extraordinary resource for each and every resident of Wellesley, and we need your help to keep the WFL the best library it can be.

In the fiscal year July 1, 2014- June 30, 2015, the WFL Foundation granted $292,610 to the Wellesley Free Library. Thirty-seven percent was granted through the Foundation's Centennial Fund to support collection enhancement; 29% provided technology education programs and enhancements; 26% provided the operating funds for the Hills and Fells Libraries; 4% was granted to English as a Second Language Program and 5% supported preservation and outreach efforts.