Eckhart Public Library launches For Every Citizen campaign, aims to raise $12 million

Photo Supplied - Eckhart Public Library

AUBURN, Ind. (WOWO) – Eckhart Public Library announced a $12 million capital campaign goal Monday, one year after it was damaged by arson.

RELATED: Investigators: Auburn library fire was intentionally set

The campaign, For Every Citizen: A Capital Campaign for Eckhart Public Library, aims to grow and expand services for all ages, build an endowment fund for future maintenance and emergencies, and build upon the philanthropic legacy of library founder Charles Eckhart, whose goal was a library “not for any particular class or group, but for every citizen.”

The goal of $12 million will meet these needs:

  • $6 million to restore and renovate the main library, purchase books and materials to replace the entire collection destroyed by the fire, and make other capital improvements to the campus.
  • $1.5 million for growth and expansion of teen and children’s services.
  • $4.5 million in an endowment for maintenance and an emergency fund.

During an event Monday, the library announced a $4 million matching lead gift from The James Foundation, as well as a bequest of $981,967.01 from Auburn resident and library patron Dorotha B. Schrader, who died in November 2016.

Combined with pledges already received and insurance settlements, the campaign is about 75 percent to its goal. The community has donated $155,845.01 to date.

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