Library Foundation for Sarasota County purchases 400 MakeDo To-Go Kits, thanks to receipt of $10,000 grant

Goal is to promote hands-on learning for young library users

Children use MakeDo To-Go kits at a Sarasota County library. Photo courtesy Library Foundation for Sarasota County

The Library Foundation for Sarasota County has received a $10,000 grant from the Harry Shapiro Charitable Foundation to purchase 400 MakeDo To-Go kits that were distributed free of charge this summer to young library users, the Foundation has announced.

“These ‘grab and go’ kits encourage young engineers to imagine, design and create with a basic cardboard box, promoting hands-on learning opportunities in the areas of science, technology, engineering, arts and math,” a news release explains. “They are an activity of the Creation Stations that can now be found in all Sarasota County branch libraries, thanks to the Library Foundation, the Charles & Margery Barancik Foundation and other generous donors,” the release adds.

“These hands-on ‘makerspaces’ allow library users of all ages” to imagine and create objects using 3D printers and a wide variety of other tools, for free, the release points out.

Youngsters at a Sarasota Housing Authority facility enjoy one of the kits. Photo courtesy Library Foundation for Sarasota County

“I am grateful to the Harry Shapiro Charitable Foundation for supporting this innovative way to bring Creation Station activities into our patrons’ homes,” said Renee Di Pilato, director of the Sarasota County Libraries and Historical Resources Department, in the news release. “The kits are a perfect activity for summer learning and preparing for the school year ahead,” she added in the release.

“We’re grateful to have this support from the Harry Shapiro Charitable Foundation and greatly appreciate their strong support of the libraries’ STEAM programming,” said Alisa Mitchell, the Library Foundation’s executive director, in the release.

To learn more about all the ways the Library Foundation for Sarasota County strengthens the county’s public libraries through its support, visit SarasotaLibraryFoundation.org or contact Mitchell at alisa.mitchell@sarasotalibraryfoundation.org or by calling 941-404-4985.

Founded in 2011, the Library Foundation for Sarasota County is an advocate for strong public libraries, the release points out.

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