Bridge of Books Foundation
Rumson, New Jersey
The books were part of Bridge of Books’ summer reading initiative, where books are distributed to underserved students across New Jersey to encourage them to continue reading during summer months. The books reached more than 9,000 students in 11 counties throughout the state.
Meg Murray, VO of Instruction at East Side High School in Newark said, “The quality and variety of books were amazing. There was something of interest for every student. There’s nothing better than watching students sift excitedly through books to choose ‘the one.’”
Middle school students were encouraged to take home two to three books to add to their home libraries to encourage them to keep them reading during the summer months.
Abby Daley, Exec. Director of Bridge of Books, reported, “This is really huge for us, since we don’t usually receive a lot of middle school book donations. Last year they could choose just one title to own and read during the summer.”
Established in 2005, Bridge of Books offers an ongoing source of books to underserved children throughout New Jersey to support the development of literacy skills and encourage a love of reading. Working with a network of agencies across the state, Bridge of Books brings books to children who don’t have adequate access to books in their own homes, schools, and communities.
Scholastic Book Fairs joined the organization’s campaign in 2015. Overall, SBF has donated more than 73,000 books to help promote literacy in this way in New Jersey alone.
The entire graduating preschool class of New Jersey’s Head Start program received free “Learn to Read” phonics book sets to take home to help develop their reading skills before they head to kindergarten next fall. The children were thrilled to get their own books because most of their families live below the poverty level, so books are viewed as luxuries.
During an event hosted by Rutgers Child Advocacy Clinic (a program that focuses on educating older foster youth about other services that are available to them as they age out of the foster care system), kids were given the opportunity to choose several free, high-interest books to take home with them.