06/18/17 — Groups hold book drive

View Archive

Groups hold book drive

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on June 18, 2017 8:36 PM

Communities in Schools, the Partnership for Children of Wayne County and Wayne County Public Library are holding a book drive they hope will bring in over a thousand books to distribute to children.

"We're collecting new and gently used books for ages 4 to 8 or 9," said Selena Bennett, executive director of CIS.

Charles Ivey, executive director of the Partnership, went a step further, making a pitch for colorful books that appeal from infancy up to elementary school.

The Partnership always needs books, he said.

"We give a book to any child that crosses our threshold," he said. "We have a book bin and invite them to pick a book they like."

At Communities in Schools, Mrs. Bennett says she is in constant communication with reading teachers and reading specialists, working to get books in the hands of those that need them.

The summer is an especially good time for the appeal, she said.

Students are out of school and parents taking the time to clean out closets and minimize clutter just might want to pass along some of the chapter books their child has outgrown.

All three groups sponsoring the book drive have been involved in a collaborative effort to promote early literacy.

The Partnership, which caters to children from birth to age 5, has focused programming on encouraging parents to read to their children from infancy.

"It's amazing how many kids do not own a book until they start school," Ivey said.

But rather than wait until school resumes in the fall, he said he hopes the effort will bring in a good response to the ongoing need.

"This community has really embraced the idea of working toward literacy," Mrs. Bennett said. "We did this two years ago and collected 1,200 books."

If setting a goal helps, that seems as good of a target as any.

"One thousand to 1,200 would be a wonderful goal" for the book drive, Ivey said. "Just think how great that would if 1,200 kids in this community got their very first book."

Colorful boxes earmarked for the drive will be set up at all branches of the public library, the Partnership office on William Street and CIS at the Chamber of Commerce.

The groups chose June 19-24 for the drive, making it part of the United Way Days of Action, formerly called Days of Caring.

"Days of Action is June 23-24 but we have extended ours to the entire week," Mrs. Bennett said.

She also suggested that any groups or churches who may have collected a large number of books, can call her office and make arrangements to have the donation picked up.