Photo Credit: Mason Sterr, Digital Fever Media

KAUKAUNA — The Kaukauna Public Library has been named 2023 Community Partner of the Year at the recent Heart by the Valley Chamber of Commerce awards dinner.

The library was one of five Kaukauna organizations honored recently by the Chamber.

The Community Partner of the Year Award recognizes a business, organization or public agency that has demonstrated a commitment to work with the Chamber and the local communities to solve problems and enhance the future of the Heart of the Valley, according to a post on the Chamber’s Facebook page.

Kaukauna Public Library has adapted and emerged as a true innovator in the community…no longer only a repository for books, this organization has become a community leader, an advocate for workforce development, a hub of inclusion and a mecca for family learning and fun, the Chamber noted.

“The City of Kaukauna is truly blessed to have a library that goes above and beyond its mission and is a force of good in our community!” read the post.

Paid Partnership

After moving into their new facility in 2016 the staff began to reimagine what the library could to do for the community. In the coming years the organization took their mission to a new level, building a one-of-a-kind outdoor learning garden, launching their Little Free Pantry to provide free food to families in need, and offering a new Brown Bag lunch program to provide free lunches to youth throughout the summer months.

Each year, library staff lead a winter coat drive and a school supply drive and have forged strong relationships with the local school district, area nonprofits, the Chamber and the local business community. Unbelievably all of this growth has been done with no additional staff or financing other than through grants.

Paid partnership

By staff