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Library Offers Fine Amnesty for Food Donations

The Springfield-Greene County Libraries are again offering patrons a painless way to pay off overdue-book fines while helping others across the Ozarks.

During Food For Fines week, Jan. 22-28, the Library will subtract 50 cents from your overdue-book (or other checkouts) fine balance for each item of non-perishable food you bring to any branch library or the Mobile Library. Food For Fines is a partnership between the Library and Ozarks Food Harvest, the region’s only food bank.

Patrons may deliver non-perishable items to the checkout desk at any of the district’s 10 branch libraries or the Mobile Library during regular business hours. Items most needed include canned meats, canned and boxed meals, peanut butter, canned fruit, cereal and hygiene items. Please no beverages in plastic or glass containers.

There’s no limit! Bring in two items, pay off $1; 10 items pays down a $5 fine. Bring in more, pay off more. The offer does not apply to fees for lost or damaged materials. Since patrons with a $10 fine may not check out more items, Food For Fines allows children, teens and adults to easily reduce the fine balance so they can begin enjoying library privileges again.

During the 2011 Food For Fines, Library patrons donated 8,357 lbs. – more than 4 tons – of non-perishable food to Ozarks Food Harvest.

The food bank distributes 12 million pounds of food annually to agencies serving poverty-stricken children, working poor, families and seniors in 28 southwest Missouri counties, reaching more than 20,000 people weekly. In addition to food distribution, Ozarks Food Harvest offers direct relief through its Kids Café, Weekend Backpack Program, Senior Food Box and Mobile Food Pantry programs.
 

For more information call Community Relations at 616-0564.

Kathleen O’Dell is community relations director for the Springfield-Greene County Library District. She can be reached at kathleeno@thelibrary.org.

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