For the past eight years, the Garfield County Libraries have held an annual “Food for Fines” campaign. It has coincided with Library Lovers’ Month each February, and encouraged people to bring in nonperishable food to donate in exchange for library fine forgiveness.
Over the years we have witnessed many forms of giving; from a small child carrying in a can of corn and using all his might to hoist it onto the counter, to adults bringing in boxes full of assorted items. People have even brought in food to pay off strangers’ fines, or simply to donate without request for reciprocity.
During the first year of the program we collected 990 items. This year we were just two items shy of 4,500 cans of food.