Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Santa Clara Children Living in Transitional Housing to Receive Book Collections

The Family Literacy program is thrilled that, through the support of the Library’s Friends and Foundation, we received a $1500 grant from the Lois Lenski Covey Foundation. We have used the money to buy more than two hundred books for children and families living in transitional housing in our community. Priya, our Family Literacy Coordinator, will package them in new “Read-to-Me” book bags. We will deposit them at two Santa Clara sites, Sobrato Family Living Center (serving families in transition) and HomeSafe (serving survivors of domestic violence.) Families will borrow the bookbags and exchange for new ones as they wish. On our next evening visit to the Sobrato Center, Priya and I will share the books with the families.

I had so much fun choosing a huge variety of books for all ages, from infants to young teenagers, including board and picture books, folktales, science topics, biographies, and mythology. We know that parents will enjoy reading them aloud to their children, and that older children will read them independently. These new wonderful books will help engage and entertain our families, especially during the long days of school breaks and vacations.

Lois Lenski won the 1946 Newbery medal for Strawberry Girl. The Newbery Medal is awarded annually by the American Library Association to the most distinguished American children's book published in the previous year. She was also the author of many classic books for children such as Cowboy Small and The Little Airplane, and illustrated the Betsy-Tacy series written by Maud Hart Lovelace (which I loved as a child). Ms. Lenski had a life-long concern that good books be available to all children. In pursuit of that goal, she established a foundation to provide grants to public libraries, school libraries, and non-profit agencies serving disadvantaged populations. The Santa Clara City Library was very fortunate to be one of nineteen recipients this year.

posted by EBK