Strategic Plan



Mission Statement

The Richards Free Library strives to assist people in their search for reliable information, self-education, greater understanding, and intellectual enjoyment by providing a spectrum of materials, services and programs.  The library also provides space for the gathering of people and ideas to enrich themselves and the community.


In March of 2015 the trustees embarked on a year of study. This involved discussions with community groups, selectmen, library staff and users; an in-house survey and a building inspection conducted by Shakes to Shingles.

The main areas of concerns are:

  • Create more parking
  • Offer more programs and services
  • Provide technology and training.
  • Maintain building
  • Reach out to the community
  • Encourage reading and research
  • Inform the public of what is available at the library.

We broke down these and other needs into the following plan guideline. All of the implementation suggestions are incomplete examples of ways to achieve the goals and are by no means complete. They are meant stimulate thought and discussion when trying to accomplish the goals.

GOAL – Encourage and increase reading

Increase all circulation of all materials

  • raise public awareness and ease of access to the current collection
    • Peer to peer reviews
    • Shelf helpers sharing titles that staff, friends, users and kids read and like
    • Reviews in newsletter, social media and newspapers
    • Post lists of favorites, Oscar winners, remakes, movies to audiobooks
  • target purchases to fit the community we serve.

 GOAL – Improve online education

Increase usage of online educational sites

  • Provide tutorials and training to Universal Class

Increase online literacy

  • Provide workshops
    • Overdrive class
    • Social media – for users and parents
    • Internet basic privacy training.
    • Online job search

GOAL – Community Outreach

Make books available offsite

  • Target locations and organizations around town that might sponsor of display library books and materials. Possible locations: Little library offsite lending. Salt hill Pub, Rugers, Guild, Kellyville
  • Donate Books to community outreach centers. Possible locations: rec center, senior center. Sunshine Diner, town office.

GOAL – Inform the public of library resources

Improve public media outreach

  • Suggestions: Newsletter, well advertised programs, post events and services clearly in lobby
  • Continue good relationship, town organizations including BOS, LAC, Rotary, Revite, Newport Fund, etc., radio and revite book talk spots.
  • Maintain website and social media connections regularly

GOAL – Provide meeting space for services, groups and activities

Continue our already well received clubs, groups and activities.

  • Possible additions: Encourage activities for mentally disabled individuals; seek out new visitors, intergenerational connections, teen room, parking lot/internet meetups, language practice group, Pokemon group (kids activities)

Invite people with experiences or expertise to talk rather than wait for them to come to us.

Connect community experts with a specifically interested activity groups that may already exist.

GOAL – Increase giving opportunities

Make it easy and accessible to donate.

  • Add online payment option
  • Update web page to accept donations

Update fundraising options and brochure

  • Specify where donations can be made.
  • Paid fundraising person – through the friends.
  • Donations as gifts from private celebrations, occasions and events in lieu of more traditional items.

GOAL – Maintain and add to financial assets

Continue to reassess the interest rates, money markets and federal grants and loan options.

  • Add to NHCF endowments.
  • Keep salaries in line with town.
  • Keep abreast of change sand grant opportunities for upcoming technology costs.

GOAL – Maintain building and property

Follow Shakes to Shingles building assessment

  • Priorities: Fix Front Porch, Dormers, Parking Lot, Paint and repair exterior trim buildings, paint interior of library first floor.

Increase parking spaces

GOAL – Provide technology and library education

Demonstrate the value of the resources that libraries offer throughout life.

  • Teach research techniques
  • Invite classes to the library to learn about what is available with a library card
  • Skills that can be addressed: Privacy issues for home and library computer use. Basic computer use skills including peripherals such as printers, mobile devices, setting up home modems, etc. Software – word processors, mobile software spreadsheets, imaging, …Coming up…. virtual reality
  • Consider how we might create a bare bones internet café

Reach out to business and public with assistance, workshops and classes.

Maintain Hardware/Computer updates

  • Track trends and updates to software, hardware, interface, cloud computing, patron needs, reference and internal use, online connections, non-paper lending materials, home use from website, etc. all need to be studied for adaptability, ease of patron and staff interface, costs, maintenance (cost and convenience), etc.
  • Change to laptops over time as the desktops retire and become obsolete.

GOAL – Provide great customer service

Encourage continuing education for the staff

  • Keep the staff aware of available general and department specific training.
  • Continue to work with other libraries to share/exchange resources
  • Encourage staff participation with RFL social media to stay connected with the public and changing trends.
  • Pay for attendance at conferences and workshops