Maine’s future prosperity depends on advancing innovative solutions to address community challenges, connecting people to opportunities, and strengthening our social fabric through broader civic engagement. This is the daily work of the nonprofit sector, aptly exemplified by Portland Public Library.
Step inside on any given day to find the Library connecting people to economic opportunities, nurturing innovative ideas, inspiring creativity, and fostering a joy of reading. This is all made possible by champions of a civil society in which free access and open exchange of ideas is valued and advocated. Our libraries are the repositories of the stuff that fuels our minds and souls, and I am continually impressed by the proactive ways my library colleagues share this deep well of knowledge and information with the community.
A true community center, Portland Public Library serves an impressive diversity of people. I am inspired by and grateful for this space where neighbors actually see and talk to one another face to face, given our evolving society that increasingly relies on virtual spaces for communication and dialogue.
The Maine Association of Nonprofits’ mission is to improve the quality of community and personal life in Maine by strengthening the leadership, voice, and organizational effectiveness of our state’s nonprofits. As a MANP member, the Library is part of a network of more than 800 nonprofits throughout Maine that are united around a common purpose: to advance the common good.
One of the larger nonprofits in Maine, the Library is part of a significant economic engine. In 2014, the state’s nonprofit sector employed 1 in 6 workers and contributed $11 billion to the economy. Portland Public Library is just one example of Maine’s approximately 3,000 public charities, sustaining dozens of jobs, while providing services and programs that make our community a better place to live and work.
Nonprofits are critical partners with government and business. Every day, they are hard at work, often with the help of hundreds of volunteers, weaving strong social fabric, cultivating civil society, and stimulating a healthy economy. Working hand in hand, we all can play a part in maintaining and improving the quality of life of our state.
Throughout 2017, some of our partners will share their perspective on PPL in honor of our 150th anniversary celebration.
Today’s contributor, Jamie Ritter, was selected by the Maine Library Commission in December 2014 to serve as Maine State Librarian. He is currently reading Virtual Unreality by Charles Seife.
Happy 150th Birthday, Portland Public Library!
You are an incredible resource to your community and serve as a model public library in Maine and across the nation. Bravo!
For 45 years and counting, PPL has been a foundational partner of the Maine State Library in providing, at no charge, “access to quality library collections at accessible locations for all citizens regardless of economic means or accident of geographic location.”
This regional service is critical to all Mainers and enshrined in law. At its heart, it ensures “equal and free access to the state’s great literature collections and informational resources.”
The crux of Maine State Library’s ongoing partnership is our collaborative approach and significant sharing of resources as we serve both individual citizens and other libraries.
Such a partnership requires dedication and perseverance. It’s easy to collaborate and share resources when times are great, budgets are flush, and organizations are fully staffed. When times are more challenging, the test of the partnership relies on the core values we all hold dear: to do all we can do to ensure that free access to library materials remains uninhibited.
This requires trust –trust between us as partners, and the trust we build with our communities so they know we stand at the ready to make sure public libraries remain sacred places that cherish the values of free access, privacy, enlightenment, and intellectual freedom.
Portland Public Library embodies these values and so much more. It’s a special place, embedded in the heart of the greater Portland community. PPL welcomes all, serves as a place of pride for the community, and preserves the best of our democratic values.
Keep up the great work, Portland Public! We are so honored to be your partner in bringing essential library services to Maine people. May your next 150 years be as exciting and terrific as the first.
cloudLibrary, a brand new eBook and eAudiobook platform, is finally here! Library patrons at PPL and around our state are now able to download a wider range of eBooks and eAudiobooks on this new system, and we are excited to support you through the transition.
It’s official…PPL patrons love cloudLibrary! The app is very user-friendly and the content is incredible. Longer borrowing times and absolutely no late fees make it a win-win.
“I found myself at the dealership with a two hour wait and nothing to do. So I decided to download the cloudLibrary app on my iPhone and within minutes I was listening to Lily King’s Euphoria. It was so convenient and it completely saved my afternoon!”
-Rebecca S., PPL patron
Have you downloaded the cloudLibrary app yet? All the information you need to get started can be found on our cloudLibrary help page, including helpful tips and tricks for navigating once you have downloaded the app.
And don’t forget that we are offering free pop-up help desks at all of our branch locations for anyone who would like some one-on-one tech help. We’d love to see you!
Main Library (in our New Fiction area, main floor)
Thurs., March 9, 10am-1pm
Fri., March 10, 10am-1pm
Sat., March 11, 1-4pm
Wed., March 8, 10am-1pm
Thurs., March 9, 3-6pm
Sat., March 11, 10am-1pm
Tues., March 7, 2-5pm
Fri., March 10, 2-5pm