I joined Literacy Connexus . . .
In 1996 Nancy had a student in her 10th grade class at Castleberry High School who told her he couldn't do homework because he had to take care of his two-year-old sister. Trying to be helpful, she told him to sit the little girl on his lap and let her "read" something while he studied. He told her, "We don't have anything to read in our house." She replied that a magazine or newspaper--anything really--would distract her so he could study. He answered, "You don't get it. There is nothing in our house to read."
I remembered tales of being read to until I could recite stories from Childcraft by memory, before I could read at all. I also remembered reading to my own children from the time they could sit up in my lap. What a loss for a child's mind never to have that experience.
Nancy started a project at her school to get children's books into any house that didn't have them. We collected used books from friends and church members, and bought children's books from Half Price Books. We then took a trip to the Half Price Books warehouse in Dallas to collect used books that were being given away. A school project called YAK, You and a Kid, encouraged students to read to their young siblings in the hope that those children would develop a love of reading. A demonstration at Ridgmar Mall in Fort Worth, where the older kids read to the younger, was a foreshadowing of book fairs to come!
When Lester Meriwether asked us to participate in the first Books for the Border project in 2008, we were immediately interested. We met on a Saturday to cut the wood for the bookcases. That first trip was something. We worked hanging sheetrock during the day, and built, primed and painted bookcases at night. Thankfully, the succeeding trips have been a little less intense! The first book fair was a great success. We have been hooked ever since. Each trip is unique, but all are a blessing.
This is a wonderful opportunity to plant seeds that can change the lives of children and those who come after them. We are pleased to be a part of it. Join us!
Literacy Connexus Board of Directors