Arts, Culture, and Humanities

Winter Harbor Public Library

Where history meets community

aka Winter Harbor Public Library

Winter Harbor, ME

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The mission of the Winter Harbor Public Library is to function as a center for lifelong learning and literacy for all in a welcoming atmosphere, acting both independently and in collaboration with other organizations, in particular the Channing Chapel Preservation Society and the Winter Harbor Historical Society. The library is housed in the historic Channing Chapel, an integral part of Winter Harbor's history. The building is made from the nearby beach and fieldstones and provides an attraction for seasonal visitors and local residents alike, who are interested in the town's history. The library also seeks to preserve a collection of Maine authors' works as well as a historical collection of the area.

Notes from the Nonprofit

This is a small, rural library dependent on a mostly volunteer staff.

Ruling Year


President, Board of Trustees

Mr. Howard T. Howard

Library Director

Ruth Mapleton

Main Address

P.O. Box 326

Winter Harbor, ME 04693 USA







Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Other Art, Culture, Humanities Organizations/Services N.E.C. (A99)

Public, Society Benefit - Multipurpose and Other N.E.C. (W99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is not required to file an annual return with the IRS because it is an arm of a state or local government.

Social Media

Programs + Results

What we aim to solve New!

The greatest challenge facing us as a small, rural library with an aging demographic is reaching the community and engaging them so that they will use the library to meet their needs, including continuing education, literacy, children's after-school programs promoting reading and other areas to strengthen their academic performance. The library relies mainly on a volunteer staff, many of whom are not computer literate. The few part-time paid staff do not have the sufficient time or resources to carry out focus groups and surveys to find out what the community needs in their local public library. The library also lacks the funds to redesign and update the children's sections to make them more engaging to a younger population.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Book Club

After School Club

Author lectures

Children's Story Hour

Where we workNew!

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have and haven't they accomplished so far?

To maintain a diverse collection of local and Maine authors' works. To be accessible to both the year-around community and the seasonal community. Winter Harbor gets many visitors and seasonal residents in the summer months. Many of these make use of the library and are generous donors. To provide high-speed, open WI-FI to visitors and town residents alike. To strengthen children and adult literacy.

The library offers programs in the summer including author talks to take advantage of the increased summer population. The library also offers a children's summer reading challenge to encourage reading. Volunteers offer a pre-school reading hour year-around. On early release school days (Fridays), the library offers a comfortable, safe space for children getting off the school bus, where they can look for books or use the library computers. The library offers data bases including genealogy resources for community residents to pursue their research in this area. The library is also open to any program or continuing ed. programs that residents would request. The library offers inter-library loan book services with area libraries as well as the State library system to meet patrons' needs. For those who are house bound, the library offers home delivery services of reading material.

The library has a 6-person board of directors, a 2-person part-time staff, as well as a group of approximately 30 volunteers to carry out day-to-day library activities as well as to implement programs. The board applies for grants and carries out fundraising activities for special projects.

The board reviews goals.

In conjunction with the Channing Chapel Preservation Society, which takes care of the historic building the library is housed in, the Winter Harbor Public Library was able to have an access ramp built this past year, to make the library more accessible to all. For the past three summers, the library has offered a children's summer reading program, working with area businesses to offer prizes for books read. At the end of the year, the library offers free holiday-themed books for children during its annual open house. For the past 4 to 5 years, the library has offered an afternoon school club on Friday afternoons. This was a STEAM-themed club which has now evolved into just an afternoon space for local children.

External Reviews


We do not have digitized financial information from the IRS for this organization. The information displayed below is self-reported by the organization.

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Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?



Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?


Organizational Demographics

In order to support nonprofits and gain valuable insight for the sector, GuideStar worked with D5—a five-year initiative to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in philanthropy—in creating a questionnaire. This section is a voluntary questionnaire that empowers organizations to share information on the demographics of who works in and leads organizations. To protect the identity of individuals, we do not display sexual orientation or disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff. Any values displayed in this section are percentages of the total number of individuals in each category (e.g. 20% of all Board members for X organization are female).

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Race & Ethnicity

Sexual Orientation

We do not display sexual orientation information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.


We do not display disability information for organizations with fewer than 15 staff.

Diversity Strategies

We track retention of staff, board, and volunteers across demographic categories
We track income levels of staff, senior staff, and board across demographic categories
We track the age of staff, senior staff, and board
We track the diversity of vendors (e.g., consultants, professional service firms)
We have a diversity committee in place
We have a diversity manager in place
We have a diversity plan
We use other methods to support diversity
Diversity notes from the nonprofit
This library is situated in a very non-diverse part of the U.S., the northeastern part of the State of Maine. Our volunteer and part-time staff and board reflect this majority Caucasian and aging demographic.