Join Us for the Friends of the Library Holiday Concert Friday

Image of a snowmanHoliday Benefit Concert
Friday, December 2nd from 7:00pm – 9:30pm
at the Iowa Department for the Blind (524 Fourth Street, Des Moines)

Time to get in the holiday spirit!  Sing along with Antique Harmony and Midnight Madness as they harmonize to your Holiday and Barbershop favorites also with Frank Strong & Dave & Cindy.

Only $10 a ticket – Tickets available at the door

A benefit concert for the Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped.Friends of the Iowa Lilbrary for the Blind and Physically Handicapped Logo

 Check out the Friends of the Library Website

A Message from Our Friends of the Library

Save the Date

Holiday Benefit Concert
Friday, December 2nd from 7:00pm – 9:30pm
at the Iowa Department for the Blind (524 Fourth Street, Des Moines)

Time to get in the holiday spirit!  Sing along with Antique Harmony and Midnight Madness as they harmonize to your Holiday and Barbershop favorites also with Frank Strong & Dave & Cindy.

Only $10 a ticket – Tickets available at the door

A benefit concert for the Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped

2023 Friends of the Library Campaign

If you love the services you receive from the Iowa Library for the Blind and would like to see them expanded, read below about a great way to make your gift go even further.

The Friends Board of Directors have renewed their matching challenge. For the first 50 new members (defined as someone who has not been a member for 2 years) or renewals of those who were new last year who joins by February 28,2023 $20 will be given.  This year we have a donor who will match our Board match dollar for dollar up to a total of $475.  This means, for each new member and renewal of the new members from last year, the Friends will receive an additional $40 per member!

If you are not already a member of Friends, this would be an excellent time to join since your membership will generate an additional $40 for Friends.

If you are already a member of Friends, please renew your membership and help spread the word about our matching grants.

Below is our 2023 Friends Campaign Card.  Please fill out the card and return it with your check.
2023 Friends of the Library Campaign Card

Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped

PO Box 93046

Des Moines, IA 50393Friends of the Iowa Lilbrary for the Blind and Physically Handicapped Logo

Website:  iafriendslibraryfortheblind.org

E-mail:  frndslibblindph@gmail.com

Join Us in Celebrating National Friends of the Libraries Week!

Friend Your Library LogoJoin us as our library spends this week, October 16-22, 2022, celebrating our amazing Friends of the Library group as part of the annual celebration of National Friends of Libraries Week.

Our Friends group gave a $12,000 donation this year to the library.  These funds helped the Library do so much over the last year including:

  • Add activity kits to the Youth Library and Makerspace
  • Provide Kindle Fires for volunteer audio narrators to use when recording books
  • Purchasing program materials for youth activities
  • Support of the Iowa Regional Braille Challenge activities
  • Print/Braille and large print books for the youth collection
  • Support the library’s outreach activities

We would like to thank our Friends Group for their financial support and the advocacy work they do for our library.  These help the library provide great programs and services across the state.


For more information about the Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped fundraising and membership, initiatives check out their website at http://www.iafriendslibraryfortheblind.org/

National Friends of Libraries Week is coordinated by United for Libraries, a division of the American Library Association with approximately 4,000 personal and group members representing hundreds of thousands of library supporters. United for Libraries supports those who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries, and brings together library trustees, advocates, friends, and foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information, visit www.ala.org/united.

Library Chat Podcast: May 2022 – An Episode Featuring the Library Staff

Clip art image of headphonesThis month’s Library Chat Podcast is a special episode for us.  The library staff was asked to present at the annual meeting of the Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in April.  We were asked to present on the extraordinary lengths the staff went through to keep the Library functioning during the pandemic. In addition, the we spoke about the library receiving the 2020 National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled Network Library of the Year Award.

The presentation by the library staff reflects on what was accomplished by the library over these two years and what we learned from the challenges and opportunities those years presented. It is an amazing story that we wanted to share as part of our May Library Chat Podcast by including the audio recording of our presentation.  We would also like to extend a huge thank you our Friends of the Library for giving us the opportunity to tell our story.

Our Volunteers Take the Prize

Thanks to our volunteersApril is National Volunteer Month and the library would like to thank and acknowledge our many volunteers during that month who generously donate their time and efforts to the library.  The library has many behind the scenes volunteers who help with narrating books, braille transcription, editing, shelving and processing books, and much more!  Even during this challenging time, we have volunteers who are assisting our library in providing services and resources to our patrons all across Iowa.

Today we are wrapping up National Volunteer Week with our Elizabeth Perowsky Workshops and Luncheon.  Our volunteer audio narrators are attending a workshop to share their knowledge and expertise with each other and discuss their continued work on recording books for our library collection.  This afternoon our volunteers from all areas of the library will enjoy lunch, networking and awards.  The Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped will also host their annual meeting which will feature the library staff as they discuss their work over the last two years.

Every moment our volunteers give makes a huge difference in so many ways.  Their willingness to share both their time and talents by volunteering with the Library says a lot.  Their willingness to give selflessly to help others speaks to both their strength and the quality of their character.

Staff member, Jodi Aldini, wrote a poem honoring our volunteers.

Volunteers Take the Prize

Today’s the day we celebrate
All of our volunteers.
You’re a crucial part of our Library,
And have been for many years.

You give of yourself and your time,
As if it’s no big deal.
We want to reach out to all of you
And tell you how we feel.

Whether you’re a Pioneer, Transcriber, or Narrator,
Or tackling the new braille.
The impact you have on blind Iowans
Is something no one can curtail.

We couldn’t do it without you,
Your work is second to none.
We’re in awe of your dedication
To get each task done.

The difference that you make,
Cannot be disguised.
That’s why we’re honoring all of you,
Because our “Volunteers Take the Prize!”

— Jodi Aldini

If you are interested in learning more about volunteering for the library check out our Volunteer Page.

It’s not too late! Get Your The Magic of Braille T-shirt

Front of the t-shirt: says in print, The Magic of Braille, with a graphic of a cauldron with books piled on top surrounded by stars.To help us celebrate the 2022 Iowa Regional Braille Challenge that was held in February and to promote braille literacy, we worked with local, small business The Side Garage to create a shirt around the theme The Magic of Braille.

The T-shirts are available again to order through the Online Store until Sunday, April 3, 2022.  The t-shirts will be shipped directly to you.

All shirts are crew neck and short sleeved.  Shirts are heather black with gold lettering.  The front of the t-shirt says in print: The Magic of Braille, with a graphic of a cauldron with books piled on top surrounded by stars.  The back of the t-shirt says, The Magic of Braille, in braille.  All sizing is unisex and all shirts are $20.00

All proceeds from the t-shirt sales will benefit the Friends of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped and future Braille Challenges.

Thank you for your support!