11-year old Ocilla girl helps raise money for library - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

11-year old Ocilla girl helps raise money for library

By  Stephanie Springer  - bio | email

OCILLA, GA (WALB) –An 11-year old Ocilla girl is going to great lengths to make sure the public library in her town stays open.

It all started when she heard the library was having troubles with money, so she's taken it into her own hands to organize a fundraiser to help keep the library afloat.

Library employees say people in Irwin County are using the library now more than ever because of the economy. The library manager estimates between 5 and 600 people use the public library every week. But even though attendance is up, money is down. But thanks to the help of an 11-year old, the library may get all the help they need.

Every single day 11-year old Ashley Alderman heads to the Irwin County Public Library. "I like to read and play on the computers," she said.

With it conveniently located just steps from her house she considers it a second home. Over the years she spent so much time at the library, she's developed some special friendships. "She comes here everyday, she comes in the door and gives me a hug she's my girl," said Deborah Moorman, Library Manager.

She's developed an especially close bond with the library manager Deborah Moorman, who is also her adopted grandmother.

But when Alderman found out the library needed help with money, she took action. She's come up with a fundraiser called "Eat and Read" and she says she did it because she doesn't want to see one of her favorite spots close. "I wouldn't have anything to do. I wouldn't be able to read my books or get on the computer," she said.

And the help couldn't come at a better time. "The problem is we are in a period of high usage and low amounts of money coming in," said Moorman.

If the library does not get enough money, staff members fear for the future. "If we cut services and hours that means we have to cut staff and we don't want to do that," said Moorman.

The fundraiser started off small, but thanks to thinking of one girl it's taken off and now the community is involved. "She has a commitment and a passion I have rarely seen in a child her age,"said Moorman.

Which goes to show, if one 11-year old can help save a library...imagine what you can do.

The fundraiser will be this upcoming Saturday, September 11th in front of the Brick Oven Pizza in Ocilla. Alderman will be selling pizza, cupcakes, hotdogs, lemonade and more. It will start at 9am and go all the way until 2pm.

All proceeds go to the library.

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