Libraries and childrenNow here’s an idea I found intriguing. The Monroe County (MI) Library System has declared the first Friday of each month a “Fine Friendly Friday,” in which library users can return overdue items – no matter how long overdue – and have them excused. To take advantage of this deal, the user must donate $1 to the library’s charity of the month, as listed on the program’s Web page.

I admit, given that many libraries I’ve come into contact with that hesitate over appearing to ally with churches, I was surprised to see that at least two of the charities listed are religiously affiliated. But the charities seem like good ones, they’re Library-Board-approved, and the fact that they’re mostly local is a great thing. Fine Friendly Friday looks like a wonderful idea for modeling charitable giving for children with overdue books and DVDs. The kids will see that the library is giving up its fine money to help others in need.